Planning Problem & PD rights prior to implementation

9 Aug 2016
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United Kingdom
Hello all, just came across this site and it has a wealth of information, so thought i would sign up and ask a question which is a bit of a dilemma i am facing..! hopefully someone in this forum may shed some light.!

Background: 4 bed detached house, with an existing 4m single storey extension on the rear right hand side of the property which was built under PD rules in 1978. There is only one house in the proximity of the land, and it is on the left hand side with a clear 1m gap between the houses which is my land and a fence is up on the boundary. The house currently benefits from PD rights with no restrictions.

Current Planning status: Planning sought to undertake a 2 storey side and wrap around rear extension. Included within this, i applied for to infill the left hand side ground floor by 4m to bring the whole house in line at the rear.

Problem: Planners have accepted that the 2 storey side and wrap around rear is acceptable to them. The house next door have kicked up a fuss and objected stating that the single storey rear extension which is on the left hand side (closest to them) is "greatly restricting light and outlook' into their conservatory which is sited on the other side of the fence. The planning department has now come back to me giving me the opportunity to cut that extension right back to around 2m in depth with no reason given.

Alongside this, the planning department is also very likely to remove the PD rights on the property as this is apparent normal practice for the area when they grant an extension of this size.

Bearing the above in mind, the 4m ground floor rear extension is key to making the internal layouts work, and i thought i had it in the bag as its allowed under PD...

I have done a reasonable amount of research and i think i have two options but i am not sure if any of these would work....

1. Go back to the planning authority and tell them i have had a change of heart and want to remove the ground floor rear extension completely leaving just the double storey side and rear. Then, once they give me the permission but remove my PD rights, build the ground floor rear extension under PD, get a certificate of lawfulness and then implement the planning permission mentioned above. Can i do this based on the assumption that in granting the current application, they will remove my PD rights (but i have not yet implemented that permission)?

2. Try and talk to the planning authority to ask why they are contesting the ground floor rear 4m, as it is allowable under PD hence i could do it anytime? Then if i get nowhere with them, accept whatever they propose and then build what i want under PD and then implement the planning permission afterward (based on the assumption that they will remove my PD rights)

I guess the real question i am asking in both scenarios is, if i get planning permission with a condition that the PD rights are being taken away, can i use my PD rights before implementing that planning permission and therefore reap the benefits beforehand?
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Well, if I understand the Hilton judgment, the whole thing is PD anyway. But I'd want a legal opinion on that before proceeding!
How do you know that the planners will remove PD rights as a matter of course? That's unusual, and is certainly not in accordance with how the PD regime should work.

"Outlook" and light to a conservatory are not planning issues.

There was a recent thread on this type of scenario. I can't remember the outcome.
Well, if I understand the Hilton judgment, the whole thing is PD anyway. But I'd want a legal opinion on that before proceeding!
Are you sure? I may be wrong but it seems the two-storey part will be within 1m of the boundary and would therefore not be pd, regardless of Hilton.
A sketch plan would help here.
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Proposed Ground Floor.jpg
Site plan proposed.jpg
Site plan.jpg
So, above are the existing site plan, proposed site plan and proposed ground floor plans.

The part which is being contested by the council is indicated in the yellow box on the proposed site plan. It is simply a 4m rear extension which would be single storey (i.e. an extension which would be lawful under PD). This is the part which the council are asking to push in from the boundary by 3.3m, and only have a depth of 1m! its not even worth building that!

so what i would like to do, is remove the single storey rear out of the full planning, and just get the rest of the application granted. then, under PD rights, undertake that 4m rear extension.

Ask the Planner why they want you to reduce the size of the extension? Sometimes they seem to ask for things they know they cant actually enforce and if you stick to your guns they back down.

If it is to appease the neighbour then as others have said that is not a legitimate planning issue so you could probably successfully appeal a rejection. Your neighbour isn't a local councilor by any chance or work at the council?
If your third drawing is oriented with north being upwards, then the building you want to build is only going to block their sun if you happen to live in the southern hemisphere...
Depending on what colour/if your render they might even end up with more light, when the sun in the SOUTHERN sky reflects off your nicely rendered wall into their space.

A 4m single-storey extension across the back would be permitted development (assuming max. height and eaves height were 4/3m). So it only needs planning permission by virtue of the fact that it is two-storey for part of the width, right?

So, as you say, cross off the single-storey part, get p.p. for the 2-storey part, build that, and then build the single-storey part as permitted development.

However, it may only legally be permitted development for a limited time. Presumably you've looked at the Hilton case? If not, you should (google Hilton v DCLG). Because this case has overruled government guidance, this seems to be the law at the moment. It is likely the government may move quickly to overturn this, as it will enable far bigger extensions than the permitted development regime intended. Get your skates on.
I'm not convinced that we have a functioning government at present.

When I wrote 'the government may move quickly', I was thinking in terms of months rather than weeks, and yes, I think they're all on holiday now.
But to benefit from the possibilities thrown up by Hilton, the two-storey extension would need to be built first - ie walls up, roof on, windows in.
OP has to get planning permission first (2 months?) and then get the builders in. By then, the gov. might just have changed this.

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