A client was wanting to invest in North Wales and create a 5 star luxury holiday accommodation complex with a stand alone function room. After searching for some months the client found what he was looking for just outside Llandrillo near Corwen. This was a former farmhouse and a range of superb outbuildings next to a river and with extensive grounds and trees. Architects were appointed as well as numerous other experts to deal with a wide range of issues, such as Biodiversity, tree report, flood risk, structural stability of the buildings and so on. Sketch plans were prepared following the collation of the data and the pre-applicaton process with Denbighshire's planning officers got under way.
The officer felt there was merit in the scheme and agreed with us that the development accorded with Local Planning Authority's policies particularly on tourism. A planning application was finally submitted and there were issues that remained outstanding such as biodiversity but these were eventually resolved in the process of the application being considered. In the end a very happy client received the news that permission had been granted and, subject to pre-commencement conditions and building regulation approval, building work could start straight away. This will be a much sought after development in a popular tourist area providing high end accommodation and will be a boost to the tourism industry in Denbighshire.
A small Listed Cottage in Gwynedd was denied permission to extend on the grounds that it would double the size of the property and thereby harm the character of the original building.
The Architect advised that Owen Devenport be instructed to conduct an appeal and the company were duly retained to act on the applicant's behalf.
The scheme would indeed double the size of this modest building with a contemporary glass link separating the 'new' from the 'old'.
It was an ambitious scheme but it was our opinion that it made a clear statement through preserving in its entirety the existing cottage but then allowing it to be a viable proposition through a modern extension.
The Planning Inspector felt that there would be a significant risk that if an extension is not built then the Listed Building would fall into disuse and disrepair at some time in the future. We were also given the opportunity to prove that the existing building could not be used as holiday accommodation because of its size, let alone a permanent residence.
The Inspector agreed with our arguments and a delighted client has now received planning permission and Listed Building consent for this extension, with details of the glass link reserved for future approval.
A rural metal fabrication business was having to relocate to another site and the owner also needed to be on site to deal with emergency calls, secure the safety of his equipment and he needed to be in a rural location to serve the majority of his customer base - being local farmers. The client already had a site that had had permission for an agricultural shed, but he now wanted a new shed for the fabrication business as well as a rural enterprise dwelling. The LPA were originally opposed to the proposal citing poor access and questioning the need for such a dwelling in such a location. However further discussions took place with the highway authority and passing places were agreed in order to mitigate any possible increase in danger to highway safety. Substantial evidence was submitted in order to persuade the Authority that this was a bona fide rural based enterprise with a genuine need for a dwelling associated with that business. The planning committee paid a site visit and when returned to the committee the application was finally approved, saving the client's business and ensuring a long term future for him and his family.
A derelict property was originally converted into a dwelling in the 1980's with an agricultural occupancy condition which was also backed up by a Section 52 legal agreement that also restricted occupancy in this way. The client wanted to remove the restriction as this affected value and the ability to sell the property. Indeed neither he or the original owner had ever worked in agriculture. Following a Legal Opinion from a Planning Barrister, instructed through Owen Devenport it was decided to request that the legal agreement be discharged, particularly in the light of later evidence that brought to attention a recent permission allowing the conversion without any of the original occupancy restrictions. It was clear that the legal agreement served no planning purpose and the Local Planning Authority had little option but to discharge the restriction. The dwelling is now totally unencumbered and retains a proper open market value.
The operators of a successful rural enterprise, Llaniestyn Autos, wanted to apply for planning permission to replace their existing caravan/chalet on the site. This had been given permission over 10 years ago and was linked to the business There was a case that the proposal was merely replacing an existing residential unit for another and that it was in line with the thrust of policy governing rural enterprise dwellings. An application was submitted with all the necessary evidence and statements concerning policy, but the proposal, surprisingly, met with resistance from the officers of the Local Planning Authority. However after persuasive arguments and assistance from their local Councillor, the Council finally granted permission. The result will be a much improved structure, far more sustainable than the old caravan/chalet and a more comfortable family home for the applicant and his young family. It was difficult to undestand what the objection was from officers, but fortunately common sense prevailed and the client was delighted with the outcome.