Complex planning results in success for two detached dwellings


Project Background

Our client had an exciting opportunity to develop part of their large garden to provide themselves with the ideal lifetime home now their family have flown the nest. In addition, we saw the opportunity to get 2 houses on the site, allowing them to sell one plot the help finance the build.

The objective was to build two much needed attractive and sustainable homes. Our client wanted to downsize into one of these new houses themselves, in the village where they had lived for many years and wished to remain. This also allowed for the release of a large family home to the market which has become a practical and financial burden to them.

The initial pre-planning application met with a somewhat unusual response from the planners. Despite being within the borders of the village and bounded by other houses, the local authority had a specific policy in place which only allowed development on brownfield sites, which the site was not. However, we kept an eye on developments and some months later changes in policy meant a full application was likely to be successful.

We demonstrated that the local authority was unable to prove a 5 year land supply for housing, and that National Planning Policy Framework Para.14 had become a material consideration and therefore outweighed the local brownfield policy.

This effectively meant there should be a presumption in favour of sustainable development. We had previously demonstrated sustainability in our application and design statement, this was supported in an email exchange with the planning case officer.

The outline application was therefore re-submitted for 2 detached houses with associated garaging, parking and amenity and approval granted in July 2018.

The House

The scheme is for a 2 storey, 3-bedroom house for our original client and single storey, 2-bedroom house for their friends. Whilst the houses are very different, they use the same architectural language and materials to create a cohesive and attractive addition to the street scene of the village.

The tiled, articulated roofs and horizontal timber cladding and red brick elevations give a slightly more contemporary aesthetic to the exteriors and retention of the existing stone boundary walls helps the scheme sit comfortably in its setting.

The proposed buildings make good use of the space available. With private access ways and parking, the dwellings demand their own individual setting whilst remaining consistent with the established pattern of development in the immediate area. Careful consideration is given to massing, proximity and outlook, with no adverse impact caused to neighbouring amenities. The orientation is such that natural daylight and solar gain will benefit the internal spaces whilst also making the most of garden views.


We have worked closely with the client to deliver a viable project which responds to all aspects of their brief. Whilst building their forever home is the key driver, the benefits of working with another party to build out the second plot were explored and thought to outweigh the option of simply selling it on the open market.

Our clients offered the plot to friends who also live in the village and who also wish to downsize into a bespoke house designed to meet their changing needs. This will help ensure the project was delivered in a timely manner whilst also offering the financial benefits of building 2 houses at the same time. We have now developed a modern and coherent design which offers kerb appeal and wow factor whilst preserving and being sympathetic to the setting and character of adjacent properties.

We are now preparing drawings to satisfy the reserved matters of the outline planning permission, we’ll then be developing all the construction drawings, finishes schedules and negotiating with a local builder to ensure we get the best price possible for the construction of the houses.

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We have both had a good look at the designs and we absolutely love them. It hugely exceeds our expectations and for this we are truly thankful of your superbly impressive work! We are so excited to think that this could be ours - you are very talented indeed.


To find out more about our client-led approach to design, have a read of our blog posts on bespoke architecture, designing from a blank canvas and our client lifestyle briefing process.

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