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Cwmbran garage built without permission allowed to stay up

Torfaen Civic Centre in Pontypool

A REPLACEMENT garage built without planning permission, which it was claimed had led to a loss of light and property value, can stay up. 

A retrospective application for approval for the 2.6 metre high flat roof garage, that is 3m wide and 6m long and detached from a bungalow at Oakfield Road, Oakfield, Cwmbran, was made to Torfaen Borough Council.

It replaced a previous garage that had fallen into disrepair, which it’s claimed dated back to 1936. Work was completed by November last year. 

A neighbour complained the new garage is “taller” than the original and “causes loss of light and view from neighbouring property”. 

It was also claimed applicant Goeffrey Hallett hadn’t consulted his neighbours and the garage has meant a “devaluation of (a) neighbouring property”. 

But planning officer Tom Braithwaite said there is a presumption of development “incidental to the enjoyment” of a home though the impact on the character and appearance of the area, neighbouring properties and whether it offers biodiversity enhancements have to be considered. 

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His report said the new garage is similar to the one it replaced and set back from the house and a result has a similar impact on neighbouring properties. 

He also said as there is already an outbuilding at the property, behind the garage, there is no greater impact on the neighbouring property from the new garage. 

Mr Braithwaite stated: “The neighbour also objects to the development on the grounds of loss of view, lack of communication from the adjoining occupier and potential devaluation of the property; these are not material planning considerations, and therefore have been given limited weight in the determination of this application.” 

He said a bird box has been placed on the side of the garage which is considered a “sufficient form of ecological enhancement” and approved the application.