'˜Garden grabbing' development in leafy Doncaster suburb '˜should be approved' despite residents' objections

A development labelled '˜garden grabbing' by concerned neighbours in a leafy Doncaster suburb has been recommended by council planning officers.Â

A development labelled '˜garden grabbing' by concerned neighbours in a leafy Doncaster suburb has been recommended by council planning officers. 

Applicant Richard Cooper wants to demolish a garage and build a two-storey house at the bottom of a plot on Plantation Avenue in Bessacarr.

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A new access road linking to the house to Plantation Avenue is also included in the plans. 

The proposed dwelling has a contemporary design, using timber, stone, render and glass. The height of the building would be six metres at its highest point, stepping down to three metres at its lowest.

Documents seen by councillors show the application received seven objections.

One neighbour referred to the development as '˜garden grabbing' while another raised concerns about the loss of trees and the affect to the conservation area. 

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Another said the dwelling was '˜inappropriate' and one resident added the development will harm '˜local ecology'. 

Neighbour John Frankish raised concerns about trees and mentioned a previously approved development nearby had '˜given precedent' to others like the current application.

He said: 'Three perfectly healthy trees have been cut down to allow for existing development at this site and building at this new plot will inevitably mean more to follow.

'Without some sort of restriction the unique character of this area which makes it so attractive to this type of damaging infill development will soon be gone.

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'In the likelihood that the councils own environmental advice will once again be ignored, might we request that the severe overlooking afforded to these current designs be restricted - specifically, the use of frosted/obscured (not mirrored) glass in first floor windows overlooking adjacent gardens and the removal of the 'roof garden'.'

But planning case officer Alicia Murray said the application was a '˜finely balanced scheme' and recommended councillors approve the development. 

She said: 'It is not considered that the proposal is significantly more harmful to residential amenity.

"As stated by the design and conservation officer, the character of this particular area rests in the green and open woodland character. The proposal has been designed to preserve the woodland setting of the area and would not harm the significant protected trees on site. Given the above the application is recommended for approval.'

Councillors will make the final decision at a planning meeting on Tuesday, January 8.