FURIOUS residents of a Brentford conservation area hope strength in numbers will see them halt a housing developer’s plans for their neighbourhood.
Tomorrow night (Thursday) the Hounslow planning committee will consider an application by Orbriton Portfolio Corporation to extend an Edwardian house it owns at 23 Clifden Road.
The firm, which is based in the British Virgin Islands, is seeking permission to build a single-storey rear extension as well as a two-storey side extension and to enlarge the roof.
Dismay greeted the news of the plan when it was revealed in October last year and more than 40 people living in the road have signed a petition against it. They are also angry to discover the proposal is being recommended for approval by Hounslow planners despite the site sitting within the St Paul’s Conservation Area.
Within such zones, introduced according to the council’s website to ‘preserve and enhance the special character and appearance of these areas and to resist inappropriate or harmful development’, even the pruning of trees is subject to strict prior approval.
Trish and Michael Burden, who live in Clifden Road, said: "The council stops us from even cutting back trees in our gardens under conservation area rules but is waving through this massive two storey extension by a property developer."
Neighbours fear the extensions will block out light and overlook their gardens. Part of the plan also requests the demolition of the house’s garage, which has raised further concerns of pressure on parking, in a road where residents claim they already find it impossible to find a parking space.
Another resident, Adam Jackson, said: "We have a real community spirit in this road - helping neighbours and with a community street party at Christmas. We live here because we love Brentford and we love and respect the local buildings. This plan is not by a family who want to create a bit more space in their house. It is by an outside developer who just wants to make money, fit as many rooms onto the land as possible and move on - with no care about the heritage of the area."
Chris Collins added: “If the Council approves this then they will be ignoring their own rules and disregarding the views of local people. It will show there is one set of rules for property developers and one for local families."
In November last year Orbriton also applied for a single-storey outbuilding including a bathroom for the house’s rear garden. This was approved under planners delegated powers on December 21.