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Planners reject 'domineering' proposal for Fordingbridge eco-home
Planning chiefs have rejected a controversial application to build a large eco-house behind a listed building in the New Forest.
The proposal to construct a modern three-storey home in the grounds of the Old Manor House in Church Street, Fordingbridge, had sparked a 53-name petition.
Objectors attending a meeting of the district council’s planning committee branded the scheme a “disaster” that would destroy a valuable green space.
The scheme also came under fire from several members of the committee.
Councillor Ann Sevier, who represents Fordingbridge, said it amounted to over-development in what she described as a unique part of the town.
Councillor Maureen Holding added: “We are losing idyllic rural scenes all over the Forest. I don’t want mini towns – and that’s what we’re getting in places.”
Plans to redevelop the site, a few doors from St Mary’s Church, also came under fire from Councillor Diane Andrews.
She said: “It’s an amazing design but couldn’t it be built somewhere else, where it stands alone? The applicant is proposing to put it in the back garden of a listed building and that to me is wrong.”
But a report to councillors said the Old Manor House was built in the early 18th century and was part of a conservation area.
It added: “The new dwelling would be domineering and out of context.”
Applicant Ian Lemon cited the absence of any objections from statutory consultees, but councillors rejected the proposal by 15 votes to two.
After the meeting Mr Lemon said he was considering an appeal.
He added: “The building is very contemporary but has been designed for that location. We’ve really tried to make it fit in with the environment.”