This week’s meeting of Penarth Town Council’s planning committee considered an application to divide a large semi-detached house in Kymin Terrace – which is in the Penarth Conservation Area – into two separate self-contained homes.
The property – No.8 Kymin Terrace – was built in the late 1800s. Ten years later an annexe was added on the south side of the original property and the main entrance to the house was installed in this.
The architect, Nigel Arnold, notes in the planning application that “The rear of the property has been pretty badly ‘butchered’ by the addition of unsympathetic brickwork, new window and door openings, concrete access steps etc.”
The proposal is to split the property into two separate dwellings. The ‘Annexe’ dwelling
will would retain the use of the existing front entrance whilst the original part of the house would have a new front entrance installed – fronting onto Kymin Terrace. Part of the rear of the property would be demolished and two – more modern two-storey extensions would be built.
Because both the chairman of the planning committee Nigel Humphrey (Labour St Augustine’s) and the deputy chair Cllr Mike Cuddy (Labour St Augustines) know the architect – Mr Nigel Arnold – personally, both had declared an interest and left the council chamber.
The Town Clerk said Penarth Town Council’s planning adviser [Emma Langmaid of Prospero Consultancy] had suggested that the council should not object to the scheme.
Cllr Martin Turner (Conservative Plymouth Ward) asked whether there were “any objections from the neighbouring house” and was told there were none.
However there was an email from Vale Councillor Neil Thomas (Labour St Augustines) [ who lost his seat on Penarth Town Council in last year’s elections] last year. He is calling for a “Section 106 “community contribution” to be made by the owner, to the Vale of Glamorgan Council –[on which he sits as a member of the planning committee].
If agreed, Cllr Thomas’s proposal would probably be the first time that such a charge has ever been levied on a private homeowner in Penarth and would have major ramifications for any other local residents planning to subdivide their properties in Penarth or elsewhere in the Vale .
In his email Cllr Thomas says “This is a large extension in a large plot of land. On the face of it there seems no good planning reasons to oppose however I would be worried at the potential impact on neighbours especially given the potential for overshadowing and overlooking.”
He adds : I would hope that given the scale of what is effectively a new dwelling that there should be some community contribution in line with the s106 rules if the officers are minded to agree to this development”.
The planning committee – minus its chair and deputy chair – recommended approval of the scheme and did not discuss Cllr Thomas’s email. The final decision will be made by the Vale of Glamorgan Council .
The issue of Cllr Thomas’s call for a Section 106 levy to be imposed on the development is a contentious one and the outcome of this planning application will be therefore be awaited with interest.