The report of the Corporate Director (Public Protection, Planning and Governance) sets out an appeal against the refusal of Estate Management consent for the replacement of a front door (retrospective).
The report of the Corporate Director (Public Protection, Planning and Governance) set out the appeal against the refusal of Estate Management (EM) Consent for the retention of a replacement front door.
The application was refused in February 2019 “by virtue of its uncharacteristic colour, and modern design would constitute a change that would be significantly out of character with the area to the detriment of the character and appearance of the property and the immediate street scene. Accordingly the proposal would fail to maintain the values and amenities of the EM scheme and is contrary to Policy EM1 of the EMS”.
The site contained a two storey, mid-terraced dwelling with a pitched roof and formed part of a row of three terrace properties. The dwelling was located on the south side of The Croft. The dwellings along The Croft were generally consistent in character, appearance and design. The property featured a flat roof front canopy with white narrow pillars.
The previous front door was white and was designed with a rectangular glazed top panel and solid rectangular lower panel. Either side of the front door were two glazed panels which replicated the design of the front door.
The proposal sought the retention of the existing front door with a modern style door. The proposed door was a composite, timber effect door with a narrow glazed panel positioned in the middle. The front door was set within two glazed panels either side of the front door which replicated the design of the front door. Additionally, the proposed door would be finished in brown which was a departure from the predominant white door colour within The Croft and wider Garden City.
The report noted that a case had been advanced by the appellant in support of the appeal but that no additional evidence or information has been put forward by the appellant which added to or would alter Officers recommendation
The appellant spoke in support of her appeal and raised the following points:
· She thought consent was not required as there was “no mention of colour”, however Officers confirmed that it was only specified as to what did not require consent, and colour was not listed and accordingly this meant that a change in colour would require consent.
· That many properties in the areas had different doors that departed from the EMS, however the assessment of the application had been based on the immediate area where every application is considered on its own merits. In this instance, The Croft consisted of traditional, white doors, which the proposed scheme did not reflect.
· The appellant thought that Officers had suggested a brown door, but the Officer clarified that the colour of the door had been mistaken as brown, and they understood that it was a black door.
· She felt that the Council website was not prescriptive enough however the Officer considered it the responsibility of the appellant to contract the Local Planning Authority or obtain the services of a Planning Agent.
· The appellant felt that the full reasons as to why the front door was deemed unsuitable were not provided, nor what was classified as “modern”. However the reasons for the dismissal of the application were made available in the Officers delegated report and available on the Councils website.
· She suggested that they would work with Officers to review the colour of the door and Officers advised that they would work with the appellant on the matter overcome the objections which were associated with design and colour.
Some Members had sympathy with the appellant and felt that they had done as much as they could reasonably do to adhere to the scheme and had arguably improved their property with a new front door.
Some Members wanted it noted that making decisions was challenging and unfair to the public due to the lack of clarity concerning door colour and what constituted a “detriment” to the streetscene (whereas the removal of soft landscaping for example, was often more definite).
However, Members recognised that discussions on the design guide that was out for consultation were not within the remit of the Panel and it was necessary to work within the current policy and provide consistency with decisions previously made.
Indeed, many Members felt that the design of the door was out of keeping with the streetscene and requested that the enforcement team visit Mountway and The Croft and assess properties which had unauthorized front doors. Officers agreed to do this now that the matter had been brought to their attention by the appellant.
It was moved by Councillor F.Thomson, seconded by Councillor B.Fitzsimon and
(3 Voting for and 3 Voting Against)
(Chairman’s Casting Vote - Voting for)
That the delegated decision be upheld and the appeal dismissed.