Here are some of the points which concern us and which will be included in our submission to Elmbridge Borough Council:-
- On the face of it the revised application looks much better but often the devil lies in the detail, and no more so than here with still a huge new basement which together with the other alterations increase the size by almost 50%. There is considerable concern not only about the extent of the development but about the method of any development. That starts with the excavation of the basement, its effect on the water table and the effect of that on the building. The proposed operation must require a virtual demolition and rebuild and would result in massive disruption of a quiet semi-rural area with only a modest access across common land.
- It is the view of the Trust that the proposed increase in the accommodation and the seen mass is an over-development which is contrary to planning policy and in particular that relating to this sensitive site within the Green Belt and most importantly the Tilt Conservation Area.
- Policy ENV2 sets out the standards of design that new development in the Borough should follow and states inter alia that it should be sensitive to the character of the surrounding area. The size of the proposed extensions to the application property both in massing and footprint conflict with this policy. Policy HEN10 and HEN11 relate to demolition and the need to preserve the character and appearance in Conservation Areas. As previously stated, the Council's conservation officer considers that the existing house makes a positive contribution to the character and appearance of the conservation area. The extent of the demolition now proposed and the substantial extensions will result in harm to the character and appearance.
- The existing dwelling is highly visible from the road. The mass is already quite extensive for the area. The proposed increase in the mass of the building would be totally out of keeping with the size of local houses (the Trust would point to Elm Grove Farm House in particular for comparison purposes).
For those of you who are concerned about planning issues may I ask that you give this application your consideration and, if you think fit, object on those issues which cause you concern. It is important that this sort of application is stopped because if allowed to go ahead it will set an ugly precedent which will ultimately destroy the character of the Tilt Conservation Area.