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How to Turn Refusal Into Permission in Eight Weeks

Planning consultant David Kemp, director at DRK Planning Ltd, comments

Confucius said: “Our greatest glory is not in ever falling, but in rising every time we fall.”  

The last couple of months have felt like never-ending change in planning and property around new PD rights, the Planning White Paper and changes to the Use Classes Order. So, as a bit of a break from all of that, I thought it worth us getting back to some ‘bread and butter’ project work this month…the sort of project that will always be worth looking at no matter what Boris is intending to do with the UK Planning laws!

Often the most satisfying planning victories come from turning defeat into success. This is one such story.

Refusal is the first step on the way to success
This was exactly the case with this development, a proposal for rear extensions and extra units to a three-storey, semi-detached block in a Conservation Area in the London Borough of Southwark.

The existing property comprised 3 x 4-bedroom flats – one on each floor of the property, with a generous rear garden area.

The client had previously sought to obtain permission for a part-1 and part 2-storey rear extension and convert the property into six flats – three studios on the ground floor and two flats on the first floor, plus a flat on the second floor.

However, in May 2019, this was refused for the following reasons: “Poor quality, owing to undersized ground floor units A and B, poor outlook and access to daylight/sunlight, and the unacceptable risk to the privacy of occupiers of unit B”.  

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