Upper Beeding resident ‘living a hell’ in home plan quest

JPCT 050614 S14240228x HDC planning framework. Swan walk exhibition.  Claire Vickers -photo by Steve Cobb SUS-140606-102542001

JPCT 050614 S14240228x HDC planning framework. Swan walk exhibition. Claire Vickers -photo by Steve Cobb SUS-140606-102542001

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A resident said she has found her neighbourhood in Upper Beeding to be the most ‘unfriendly’ and ‘unpleasant’ place to live after enduring a long battle with neighbours and the council in order to get planning permission.

Penny Wright submitted an application to make ‘minor amendments’ to her roof and the insertion of side dormers at Francis Lodge, Hyde Street.

At Horsham District Council’s development control committee meeting on Tuesday (September 16), Mrs Wright said that she purchased the house with her husband for their retirement, but has instead found the whole ordeal ‘emotional’.

Mrs Wright said at the meeting: “We have been trying since February 2013 to get permission, it was supposed to be the house for us to enjoy our retirement, instead it has turned into a living hell and we were only able to move in six weeks ago. We’ve suffered considerable delays caused by Horsham and our neighbours. David is 71 and I am 68 today, this ordeal has seriously taken its toll on us physically, emotionally and financially. Upper Beeding is considered to be one of the most pretty places in the area, but for us it has been one of the most unfriendly and unpleasant places to live.”

At August’s development control committee meeting, Horsham District Councillors (HDC) deferred the application because Mrs Wright had announced from the gallery that she should have been permitted to speak, claiming she submitted the right to do so but was not included on the list.

David Coldwell (Con, Upper Beeding) said: “This has been dragging on for quite a long time and regrettably it’s caused a lot of animosity with neighbours.”

Claire Vickers (Con, Southwater) said: “I cannot see any reason to refuse this, it’s visibly in keeping with the setting.”

Councillors voted unanimously to approve the application subject to conditions.