Published: August 5, 2010
Protesters in Burnham step up fight against seafront flats

A group of concerned residents and beach walkers in Burnham-On-Sea have this week stepped up their campaign to prevent a seafront home being demolished and replaced with a block of 13 flats.

It comes after was first to report last month that the developer behind the controversial proposals had lodged a formal appeal with the Planning Inspectorate over the district council's decision to reject the scheme.

Developer Moose Roper Limited wants the Inspectorate to re-examine the district council's decision to turn down the amended application for a three-storey building at the end of Allandale Road incorporating 13 flats.

Nearby residents and beach users claim the building would be out-of-keeping with the surrounding area and are sending letters to the Planning Inspectorate outlining their opposition.

David Jenkins of the Allandale Road Action Group told this week: "We feel the proposed block of flats should be rejected because it would represent over-development, be out-of-keeping with this area, and also intrude onto the beach scene."

"The Planning Inspectorate will make its decision based on written submissions, rather than a public meeting, so we need as many letters to be sent as possible as possible before the August 27th deadline. We also welcome the support of beach walkers."

"We have also spoken to our MP, Tessa Munt, about the development and hope to gain her support as well."

He added that a recent speech made by the Greg Clark, the Minister of State, Communities and Local Government, is also being explored further by the team.

"Mr Clark suggested that 'garden grabbing' and over-development is being halted by the new government so we are very interested to see whether this will have a bearing on the proposed development here."

The residents also feel the application could set a dangerous precedent for other developments along the coast.

The application was considered by district councillors on Sedgemoor's Development Control Committee in April. They rejected the plans, going against the recommendation of the planning officer.

Residents had previously won a bid in November 2008 to get the first planning application, for 14 flats, rejected on appeal by the Planning Inspectorate.

But the developers then submitted a new, amended planning application with one less flat and a different building design that they argue fits in better with the surroundings.


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