A PLANNING inspector has allowed a St Martins couple to extend their house, overturning Shropshire Council’s previous refusal.

The bid to enlarge the ground-floor study and family room and add a first-floor bedroom at Woodside Cottage, Coed-yr-Allt, was originally submitted in November 2018.

Council officers refused permission the following January, but last week planning inspector Julie Dale Clark overruled their decision, saying the house already bore “little relation” to its original form and the alterations would modernise it.

Applicants Mr and Mrs Paul Hughes now have three years to start work on their property before the consent expires.

Shropshire Council development manager Ian Kilby wrote, in the original refusal notice, that the planned extension would be “out of context and character in relation to the existing dwelling on site”. He pointed out that the cottage had previously been extended and, if the 2018 plans were approved, it would be more than double its original size.

He said the development would “adversely impact on the character, appearance and context of both the dwelling and the surrounding area”, in violation of local development policies.

In her decision notice, published on Thursday, September 5, inspector Ms Clark allowed the couple’s appeal, wrote: “There is no question that the proposal, together with previous extensions, would alter considerably what the council refer to as originally a two-up-two-down cottage.

“The proposal would be out of character with the original building but I do not consider that the existing building bears much resemblance to its origins.

“Therefore, the extension and alterations would not justify withholding permission.”

She added that the planned alterations would enlarge and modernise the house.

“The first-floor extension would incorporate a considerable amount of glazing, which would be designed to take advantage of the rural setting and countryside views.”