Furious builder blasts council after it demands he shorten house ‘by width of peanut’ | UK | News

A man says the council is making him lower his house ‘by the width of a peanut’. He believes he’s being made to spend up to £30,000 to make a house just a tiny bit shorter.

Eco Custom Homes has been told to make a new house in Beverley a bit shorter because it’s taller than the plans said it should be. The builder says they only need to make it 13mm shorter.

Planning officers for East Riding Council said that the house in Beverley, East Yorkshire, wasn’t built like the plans approved in December said it should be. A council notice said that the house, at No 3 The Old Racing Stables, in Coombs Yard, off North Bar Within, looked too big and awkward in an area with lots of old buildings.

Wayne Low, who runs Eco Custom Homes, said this decision would mean having to do work that would cost around £30,000. He said the decision was silly and promised to make a complaint to the Planning Inspectorate, which could cost the council money.

The builder explained: “In the plans that were approved we were allowed to build this 157mm higher than the house to the east, we went 13mm higher than that. If we were to do what these officers say, we would have to somehow raise the roof of a now completed and much sought-after property, remove a few bricks, and put the roof back down, costing us around £30,000. I guarantee, no one living next door or any passer-by would notice the slightest difference”, reports the Mirror.

This house was built to replace a crumbling racehorse stable, according to Hull Live. The building plans slated that the house would stand at a ridge height of just over 7 metres and eaves of around 5.5 metres.

It’s been approved to have a gap of around 1 metre between the first floor windows’ top and the eaves, however, council officers have claimed the measurements are incorrect – with the ridge measuring almost 8 metres, the eaves being over 6 metres high and the window-eave gap reaching over 1.5 metres.

The build should have followed precisely the approved plans so as to blend in with the surrounding houses. Herein lies another error as the home’s side windows should not have used clear glass, according to the local council.

The property is situated nearby two Grade II listed buildings and there’s concern from authorities that this mishaps harm the neighbourhood feel. The planning officials noted: “Beverley’s character and appearance is defined not only by the exceptional survival of its medieval settlement plan, but also by the almost uniformly high quality of the built form.”

“The continuation of this quality is essential to preserving and enhancing the character and appearance of the conservation area,” they said. “The dwelling as it has been built does not do so. The raising of the eaves height of the building creates an overly large area between the eaves and the lintel of the first floor windows, giving the building a top-heavy and visually awkward character. There is harm caused by the intrusion of an ungainly building which distracts and draws the eye.”

Cllr David Nolan, who used to lead the planning committee, plans to talk about this problem at the council’s next big meeting on Wednesday, April 5. He thinks the decision is silly and doesn’t help the people.

The Labour Hessle councillor stated: “Councillors on the planning committee are told to leave it to officers to make delegated decisions because they are so short staffed. But why is the council incurring huge cost in legal fees and staff time over such a minuscule difference to a property that is built and looks perfectly good? I want to know why the council is using a sledgehammer to crack a nut.”

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