Application 23/01558 - Elmgrove House, 48 Castle Hill

Comments on Application 23/01558 - Elmgrove House, 48 Castle Hill

2 x detached dwellings with parking and amenity space following demolition of existing dwelling and garage.

This is a classic example where the desire to add one property to the housing stock has to be set against the ecological footprint caused by demolishing a perfectly sound family home and replacing it with two new dwellings, albeit constructed to modern energy efficient standards.

It is noted that an earlier proposal ( 22/02463 ) to retain the existing house and build a new dwelling alongside was refused last year. This scheme would have avoided the impact of demolition, but the configuration and access to the site was not suitable for two dwellings. Although the address is 48 Castle Hill the property is accessed from the north via Elm Grove. It is situated at the end of Elm Grove and the submitted vehicle tracker document illustrates the confined access, limited parking and vehicle movement space associated with the proposed two detached dwellings. Garden amenity space appears adequate.

The site also lies within Castle Hill Conservation Area, although the loss of the existing house would have marginal visual impact. The replacement dwellings appear to be in an acceptable architectural style and traditional materials.

The key issue is whether the site is suitable for subdivision given its size, location and limited access. On balance, we believe that the proposed two detached dwellings will constitute overdevelopment and the application should be refused.