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Thursday, 18 December 2014

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Plan to build house on Cumbrian squash club site tipped for rejection

Plans to demolish the old squash club at Maryport are likely to be thrown out next week.

George Hodgson has applied to Allerdale council to flatten the club, which holds squash courts and is a listed building.

However, his plans sparked opposition from neighbouring residents who said the location and size of the house which Mr Hodgson wants to build in its place would ruin their quality of life.

Allerdale’s development panel is expected to refuse the development when it meets a week today.

Six letters of objection have been submitted to the council since the plans were revealed last year.

Susan Nelson said the development will look directly onto the back yard of her house on Senhouse Street.

“I have lived at this address since 1981 and value very highly the sense of wellbeing and security that the current level of privacy offers me,” she said. “This development, if it is allowed, will certainly take this away from me.”

Another objector, Sharon Campbell who lives at High Street, said consideration must be given to the visual impact of the development on the landscape.

She said: “It will impact on the panorama, as seen from the harbour and especially the beacon. Given the age and period of the surrounding properties in the area, any new building will necessarily and inescapably be out of character with the existing buildings in the vicinity.”

She added that the proposed development will “hugely and unacceptably” impact on the residential amenity of its neighbours.

The club, behind the Middle Tap on Shipping Brow, was built in 1982 and became listed when the Middle Tap building, which dates back to the 18th century, was extended.

John Nixon, who lives at Senhouse Street, said that a two-and-a-half storey building would “seriously overlook” his private back garden, especially from the first-floor balcony.

“If I wanted to live in a fish bowl, I would have bought a dwelling in the middle of the town,” he added. “If you are set on knocking the courts down then replace it with something of use to the town, like a car park.”

Allerdale councillors are being recommended to refuse the application, as the “design, scale, massing and inappropriately shaped openings” of the proposed dwelling does not “seek to enhance the character of the sensitive area in which it lies.” It will also impact the privacy of properties along Senhouse Street.

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