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16/P/00078 | Erection of a two storey side extension, changes to fenestration, insertion of new window to the front elevation and new porch. | 1 The Old School House, School Hill, Seale, Farnham, GU10 1HY
  • Total Consulted: 7
  • Comments Received: 7
  • Objections: 7
  • Supporting: 0
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Mrs Elisabeth Batty (Objects)

Comment submitted date: Thu 10 Mar 2016

Although we recognise that we are out of time for making representations in the 21 days allowed, we hope that you will be able to treat this letter as a late objection.

Like others who are objecting to the proposal, we feel that the alterations made in response to the refusal of the previous application are comparatively minor and do not address the fundamental issues of scale, mass and bulk which result in an extension disproportionate in size to the current building. We should say too that the plans as submitted are misleading in that they do not show the elevations proposed in context with the whole building. To inform the decision on the application, the applicant should at the very least be asked to produce elevational drawings for the whole building, especially in view of its historical importance to the local community as a landmark feature of the village.

Whilst we sympathise with the growing needs of the family and are not overlooked directly by the extension and changes sought to no. 1, regrettably our objection to the original application still applies to the current one in view of its harm to the overall appearance and symmetry of the building as a whole.

Mr Philip Kitchen (Objects)

Comment submitted date: Sun 14 Feb 2016

Re: Planning Application 16/P/00078

No. 1 Old School House, School Hill, Seale

I wish to register my objections to the latest planning application relating to the above-mentioned property; the revised plans contain no significant changes to the earlier application (15/P/00835) which was rejected.

Specifically the proposed extensions to the left-hand front and side / ?rear ?? elevations have not been diminished and seek to add more than 33m2 to the built footprint with a corresponding increase in the built volume over 2x floors plus a substantial increase in the roof volume, thereby completely overwhelming the proportions of the existing building.

As such the proposal represents overdevelopment of the existing site including the adjacent properties.

In its present form the complex comprising Nos. 1-3 Old School House retains the historic features of a vernacular Victorian school, first built in 1849.

It represents a key feature of the Seale Conservation Area.

It is disingenuous to suggest that the proposal will result in the restoration of ?some ... strong architectural features which were lost? without specifying exactly what these might be.

This is certainly not the case with the proposed removal of some internal walls and changes to the fenestration, particularly the number, position and size of windows on the front elevation.

The application is misleading in suggesting that the addition of No. 4 Old School House ? which replaced a small classroom extension from 1904 - is visible from the road. This is not the case.

Overall this application fails to address the numerous issues raised by the earlier application and accordingly should, I believe, also be rejected.

Dr Daniel Lindfield (Objects)

Comment submitted date: Sun 07 Feb 2016

We would like to formalise our objection to the proposed 2 storey side extension of Number 1 The Old School House.

The proposed development lies within a Green Belt, a Conservation Area, an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and an Area of Great Landscape Value. The building itself is a sympathetic conversion of the old village school building and carries great historic interest and value to the local community. Many local residents of the village went to school here and therefore strongly value retaining the character of the building. Numbers 2 and 3 The Old School House comprise the original school with No 1 being a slightly later smaller but still historical addition. The 4th dwelling (Fourways) was added in 1996 and styled to be in keeping with the rest of The Old School and was only granted planning as was a similar size and, most importantly, not visible from the road. All constituent dwellings are two to three-bedroomed properties.

A covenant was drawn up by the developer in 1996 (we believe as a planning requisite) to limit further development of the site. We feel the proposed development would be in breach of this covenant and constitute overdevelopment of this dwelling and the site as a whole.

We are the owners of No 2 the Old School House, the immediate neighbouring property. In contrast to the application letter which states that the plans were ?received positively? by the immediate neighbours we do not support them and wish to object to the proposal on these grounds:

- We feel that the proposed plans would significantly alter the character and aesthetic appearance of the Old School House conjoined building and damage its historical charm.

- We also feel that the proposed extension would significantly dwarf the original Old School building due to its bulk, doubling of width and extension of, what is already the highest point on the roof line. These changes would also be easily visible from the road.

- We believe the existing plans for No. 1 are misleading in terms of the percentage mass increase of the building. The house was converted as a 2 bedroom cottage with a loft space on the 3rd floor. This has been converted to a bedroom by the current owners and is shown on the plans as a 3rd bedroom. We are unaware of any building regulations approval for this change. In the proposed plans for extension the 3rd floor is missing from the plans and appears not to contain the existing 3rd bedroom. The mass calculations therefore include loft space as a bedroom in the ?existing? plans and a potential bedroom as loft space in the ?proposed? plans. We question this logic and feel that it would be converting a 2 bedroom cottage into a 4 bedroom house. We feel that this is unduly large, out of keeping and excessive in extra mass.

- We feel the proposed plans would result in the loss of a smaller sized property within the village.

- The proposed plans, we feel, would spoil the balance of the existing building and its visual symmetry.

- We also feel that the usable mass of No 1 has already been extended by the creation of a garden home office space in circa 2014 which is not included in the proposed plans.

- The proposed plans will impact us directly in terms of loss of light to the principal living space of our house. Our house is open plan and built to maximise light through the double height church-style windows which are the main feature and light source. The proposed extension plans would significantly reduce the light especially in the mornings as the proposals extend the roof line which is already above ours from a single pitch to a approx. 8 metre ridge line. (The exact length of this ridge line cannot be calculated from the submitted plans). We feel this is excessive and out of character.

- We feel that we would suffer loss of amenity in terms of sunshine and privacy to our primary outside space (patio).

- We have great concerns about disturbance to ourselves due the construction noise as we share foundations and two walls with Number 1. We also have concerns about access to the site across our land (the driveway to both properties is owned by ourselves).

- We feel that the proposed plans are misleading by not clearly labelling the site plan for all 4 properties within the Old School House. Please see attached amended site plan clarifying the impact the extension will have on us. The driveway at the front of the property is owned by us (No 2) and No 1 only has space to park a single vehicle with rights of access. The intricate conjoined nature of the development is also not shown.

- We quote the Council?s response to the rejected planning application from 2015: ?by virtue of the proposed scheme?s excessive scale, it would also materially harm the overall setting of The Old School House, materially detracting from the significance of this historic part of Seale and providing a large, incongruous element of built form that would be highly prominent within the street scene?. We do not believe that the revised plans differ significantly from the original plans and therefore these objections still hold true. The removal of a porch, reducing the number but increasing the size of windows and relabelling the previous proposed 3rd floor bedrooms as loft space seem to be the only differences. The size, volume and mass of the proposed extension remain the same.

Many thanks

Dan & Clare Lindfield

No 2, The Old School House, Seale

Comment submitted date: Mon 08 Feb 2016

To view this comment please refer to the documents' list.

Mr Bernard Crick and Mrs Harriet Crick (Objects)

Comment submitted date: Sun 31 Jan 2016

We objected to these plans before and our objection still stands. A few minor changes have been made but essentially there is no difference and the basic problems remain. The size dwarfs the rest of the building and it destroys a beautiful Victorian structure iconic in the old part of Seale.

The covering letter implies a precedent for development being made because of a small property built at the back which 'can be seen from the road'. We dispute this as the property in question is hidden away and, in terms of size, is in keeping.

The road is made up of modest dwellings, even those that have been extended. The property in question remains one of a few smallish character homes much needed in the village. A 4th bedroom in the attic remains a possibility.

Parking remains an issue. We note that importance is given in the application to approval given to the plans by Seale and Sands Parish Council but, with the greatest of respect to the council, none of the members live on this lane and have not consulted with the residents on this matter.

In summary, it remains as inappropriate and damaging as before.

Mr John Oliver (Objects)

Comment submitted date: Wed 27 Jan 2016

In objecting to this application I wish to emphasise that I fully understand and respect the aims of the applicant to develop a new home to provide for their perceived family needs. However, I firmly believe that they have chosen the wrong property in the wrong location to meet this aim. The Old School House is widely recognised as a charming feature of this village and its heritage, and is regarded fondly by many families who have been involved as both teachers and pupils in the past.

I register my objection to application reference 16/P/00078 for the reasons given below. I note that the application is to a large extent the same as application reference 15/P/00835 submitted in May 2015 for similar works. The earlier application was refused, inter alia, due to the disproportionate addition it imposed on the dwelling and the Old School House as a whole ? I believe that objection remains virtually as valid in respect of this latest application.

Contrary to statements in the application (on which I comment below), the proposed extension would represent a substantial increase in scale over the current unit at 1 The Old School House and not at all in balance with the character of the four units that comprise the Old School House. Measuring from the two (admittedly small scale) plans showing elevations of the existing and the proposed it is clear that the proposals represent an increase in the order of 100% in the front elevation area alone. Whilst the number of windows has been reduced from the earlier application the proposal will create a substantial imbalance on the front elevation of the overall building.

School Hill is located on a section of road that is sub-standard in almost all respects and there are regularly problems with traffic moving between the Elstead Road and School Hill. I have had documented discussions with Surrey Highways and the (Police) Guildford Casualty Reduction Officer regarding the difficulties in the area. Problems are particularly acute when children are being dropped off and collected from the nursery school at the Village Hall. The proposed extension (near the hub of the traffic difficulties in the area) would require deliveries of plant and materials to the site, which would seriously exacerbate the problems, not least because of the number of cars parked near the junction. It follows that neighbours will be disturbed by the noise (and disruption) from the proposed (construction) activities over a lengthy period.

My comments on the papers supporting the application, beginning with the covering letter and design statement, are:

1. I believe the new application has paid little attention to the substance of the principles detailed in the previous Decision Letter of 8 July 2015, although it claims to have done so;

2. The site lies on the edge of and not outside the developed area of Seale, not Seal. My point is perfectly obvious when one studies the plans supporting the application;

3. The statement in the first paragraph on the second page of the covering letter is flawed ? the road has not seen many extensions, just a very small number of works of a modest nature, unlike this application.

4. I understand from an original resident, who incidentally is a solicitor, that The Old School House as it is now fully complies with the planning conditions placed at the time. Moreover, the extension (to our house) adds only additional rooms and not an additional property. The extension is only visible from the road if one peers carefully through a high mature hedge from a rough verge on the side of a sinuous road ? a very different impact to that presented by this application;

5. Again, I suggest that there are issues with the highways. I speak as a Chartered Civil Engineer with many years? experience in highway management at a senior level;

6. Moving to the application form: the property address is 1 The Old School House, not The Old School House;

7. The description of works greatly understates the 100% increase in the area of the front elevation, etc;

8. Car parking and traffic movement is already under considerable pressure in the area of the property and will no doubt be worse if the proposals were to go ahead; and

9. The space on the existing second floor plan is shown as a bedroom, when even the estate agent handling the recent sale described it as a dwelling with ...two double bedrooms on the first floor as well as an additional useful loft room for occasional space and storage.

Mr Ron Oldaker (Objects)

Comment submitted date: Tue 26 Jan 2016

The owner of the property had 2 children when they purchased the property , therefore the intention was to try to build in an ANOB and conservation area .

The revised plans offer very little change to the original plans ( I have never seen plans so castigated by the Planning Office ) .

Regarding the "loft space , maybe a 4th bedroom in the future ?

This plan will destroy a lovely Victorian building .


Comment submitted date: Mon 25 Jan 2016

This revised application shows minimal change from the original and remains a disproportionate and incongruous addition to a classic Victorian building which would loose a lot of the integrity of the original structure.

The area at the front of the property currently used for parking would be reduced increasing the already congestion of parked vehicles in School Lane.

an Idox solution

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