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Pembrokeshire village’s seaside housing scheme expected to be approved

Mountain Ash Cottage, Sandy Hill Road, Saundersfoot (Pic: Pembrokeshire Coast National Park webcast)

NATIONAL park planners are again being recommended to back a scheme to build two large houses at a Pembrokeshire seaside village site, despite the objections of the local community council.

Pembrokeshire Coast National Park planners, meeting on January 31, were recommended to approve the scheme, submitted by an unnamed applicant through Bristol-based agent Pegasus Planning Group Ltd, for two four-bedroom detached dwellings at “a particularly large plot” at Mountain Ash Cottage, Sandy Hill Road, Saundersfoot.

At that meeting, members instead agreed to a site visit, held in mid February, with two new recommended conditions relating to the submission of a Construction Management Plan and removal of permitted development rights added to the application being considered next week.

The application, with a recommendation for approval, is back before the March 13 meeting.

It includes an affordable housing contribution of more than £140,000.

A report for members says: “Whilst the agent for the application has advised that amended plans will be submitted, these had not been received by the authority at the time of drafting this report – a verbal update on this will be provided to committee.”

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The application had been reported to the Development Management Committee at committee chair Dr Madeleine Havard’s request, as Saundersfoot Community Council has objected to the application, contrary to an officer recommendation for approval.

The site currently has planning permission for two new dwellings, with the demolition of a single property, which expires in November; the new scheme proposing to retain that property, adding two additional dwellings.

A contribution to affordable housing provision is proposed as an off-site contribution, to the tune of £140,360.

Seven letters of objection to the latest plans have been received, and Saundersfoot Community Council  – which had objected, asking for a site visit – considers the proposed development is potentially overpowering to neighbouring properties, their amenities greatly affected in a negative way and says the proposed dwellings would cause major over-development of the area.

Objector, and neighbour, Andrew Milne – at the January meeting – raised concerns about the designs and scale of the new proposal and the impact it would have on his property, leaving him “no place to hide” when he was in his garden, or even the shower, describing the previous scheme  – which he didn’t object to – as “more sensitive”.

Jack Ellis of Pegasus Group, said the “fall-back’ position of the original application was still available, but the new scheme would increase the affordable housing contribution by more than £100,000, as well as retaining the existing cottage.

A report for committee members says: “The proposed development is considered acceptable in terms of the principle of the proposed new dwellings and will not have a detrimental impact on the character of the surrounding area or the residential amenity of any neighbouring properties in accordance with the policies of the Local Development Plan.

“Affordable housing provision in the form of an off-site commuted sum has been secured through a Unilateral Undertaking.

“Arboricultural, parking, lighting and ecological matters can be acceptably controlled through planning conditions.”

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