Dorset Council (former Purbeck area): Matt Annen, a director of the firm has recently secured planning permission to for the erection of a dependant relative/family annexe and swimming pool in East Stoke, near Wareham, The supporting plans were prepared by local firm Watts Holt.

The site was located outside of any settlement boundary in the countryside and within an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and so on the face of it a proposed detached annex building of this size would most likely fail the tests set out in Policy CO – Countryside of the Purbeck District Local Plan part 1. However prior to the submission of this application, we had secured a certificate of lawfulness for a proposed swimming pool and associated outbuilding (of an identical size), within the garden area of the property. Thus we had secured a strong fallback position as an equivalent outbuilding could be constructed under permitted development rights. So the principle of development of the annex and swimming pool was accepted eventually. We say eventually because Matt did have to make a very robust case during the planning process to the planning officer who initially raised concerns and in Matt’s view was not giving appropriate weight to the fallback position.

Matt referred the officer to Case law set out in the Michael Mansell v Tonbridge & Malling Borough Council (2016) EWHC 2832. In respect of the Mansell case, a proposed barn benefited from a ‘fall back’ position in relation to permitted development rights under Class Q, Part 3, Schedule 2. Malling Borough Council officers considered that the PD rights to convert the barn to residential units was a realistic fall-back position on the basis of prior discussions with the agent about how to develop the site and the judge agreed that they had taken the correct approach. The fallback position was a material planning consideration in the determination of that case. The judge deemed it acceptable that the planning officer had regard to a fallback position in recommending approval.

This just another exmaple of the benefit that having a town planning consultant can bring with strong knowledge of policy/case law. Our clients can now build their annexe which will allow 3no generations of the same family to live as one family unit which they were delighted with; “Thanks so much again for a brilliant job”.

If you are considering an annexe or any other additions to your property, then why not call us at Pure Town Planning on 01202 585524 or email for a free of charge, confidential planning appraisal.