A HOUSEHOLDER has won a six-month battle with his local council to add a porch to a barn conversion.
Michael Robins had asked for permission to add the porch extension in front of a door to the stone barn on which already approved conversion work was ongoing.
But planners at Monmouthshire County Council said they considered the porch “a domesticated feature not associated with an agricultural setting” which they claimed would “further change the character of the converted barn” which sits in a courtyard with other residential buildings.
However Mr Robins appealed and the decision was overturned after an inspector from the Welsh Government’s appeals body, Planning and Environment Decisions Wales, visited the construction site at Cefn Coed Farm in the village of Kingcoed, south of Raglan.
Independent inspector N Jones found it “would not be overtly domestic in appearance” and it would be “visually distinguished from the host building” meaning the barn would keep its identity “as the primary building.”
The inspector said the porch would be “well below the high eaves of the barn” and wasn’t significantly wide and the stone and timber cladding would respect “existing external materials”.
The inspector said the porch wouldn’t harm the “character and appearance” of the building or wider area and be “largely screened” from the road by the barn and other buildings. The inspector also agreed with Mr Robins it would, with other features, “largely create the effect of a garden wall”.
The inspector however gave “little weight” to Mr Robins’ claim the porch would create stability for the barn and said the submitted engineer’s report didn’t demonstrate that or the porch would be the only way of achieving it.
Mr Robins has now been granted planning permission with a condition he puts forward a plan to enhance ecology at the site to comply with Welsh planning policy.