Council Concerned Over "Planning Holiday"

After government proposals allow doubling extensions for three years

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Wandsworth Council has expressed concern at new proposals to double the size of house extensions people can build without planning permission for a three year period.

According to a Government announcement, terrace and semi-detached houses would be allowed single storey extensions of up to six metres. Detached houses would be allowed up to eight metres.

Under the existing ‘permitted development’ rules the limit is three and four metres respectively.

A consultation on the proposed changes is expected to start shortly.

Leader of Wandsworth Council Ravi Govindia said: “While this proposal may provide a boost to parts of the building industry it’s unclear whether the benefits would outweigh the damage done to our neighbourhoods and neighbour relations.

He continued: “Under this Government great progress has been made in cutting red tape and creating a more dynamic, locally controlled planning system. On the face of it, this reform does not strike the right balance.

“We are now waiting for the details behind these proposals to be released and will be examining these documents very closely to see what safeguards have been put in place. In the meantime we want to assure local people that this council will resist any changes that threaten to undermine the character of our streets or allow building works that would blight neighbouring homes.”

October 19, 2012