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Appeal Decision 160 - Certificate of Lawful Development.

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November 2010 - Code a00160


Summary of Case (appeal dismissed): 


The property is a two-storey detached house, with a hipped main roof. Its north-west elevation is referred to in the appeal decision notice as the “front” elevation, and it appears very clear from the submitted drawings that this north-west elevation is “the principal elevation”. The application was for a proposed hip-to-gable extension on each of the north-east and south-west elevations, and for a dormer on the south-east elevation. The applicant had accepted that the windows in the dormer (i.e. south-east facing windows) would be clear glazed. 


The key issue was whether the use of clear glazing for these south-east windows would be contrary to Class B, part B.2(c), which requires that “any window inserted on a wall or roof slope forming a side elevation of the dwellinghouse shall be— (i) obscure-glazed, and (ii) non-opening unless the parts of the window which can be opened are more than 1.7 metres above the floor of the room in which the window is installed.” As such, the key issue was whether the south-east elevation of this property constitutes a “side” elevation or a “rear” elevation. 


The Inspector stated the following: 


“At number 8 the house was laid out with its principal private garden located on its north-eastern side. There was about 1 metre between the south-east facing wall and the rear private garden boundary with number 9. On this face the existing dwelling contained 2 first floor windows, one serving a bathroom (obscure glazed) and the other a clear glazed landing window, and a ground floor glazed door to a utility room. Such fenestration is often found in the side faces of dwellings where the wall lies close to the property of residential neighbours, and privacy is a concern. The nature of windows inserted into the north-east facing plane of the building similarly reflected the fact that this overlooked` the property’s garden land, some way removed from private areas associated with neighbouring dwellings. In the circumstances of this site this face can reasonably be regarded as its rear elevation and the south-east facing side its side elevation. 


Although ordinarily, a rear elevation would be expected to be sited opposite the front elevation, the tailoring of dwelling design to reflect an estate’s pattern of layout, and in particular to accommodate the difficulties created on corner plots in the relationships between buildings, does not dictate that this should always be the case. The house at number 8 was clearly designed in detail to reflect the limitations of space and interrelationships of buildings on this corner plot. Its south-eastern face was designed to provide a side elevation in its relationship with the house alongside, the rear being on the north-eastern side. 


In applying the GPDO provisions, I therefore consider that the Council were correct in their interpretation that the south-eastern side provided a side elevation to which condition B.2(c) applied. Failure to comply with its terms meant that the extension proposal would not be development permitted by Class B of Part 1 of the GPDO Schedule. The Council’s refusal was therefore well founded, and the appeal will be dismissed”. 


Main Conclusions: 


·       The “rear wall of the original dwellinghouse” is not necessarily the wall opposite “the principal elevation” of the dwellinghouse.
[Relevant to: “The rear wall of the original dwellinghouse”, A.1(e), A.1(f), A.2(c)].


·       “A side elevation of the original dwellinghouse” can be the elevation opposite “the principal elevation” of the dwellinghouse.
[Relevant to: “A side elevation of the original dwellinghouse”, A.1(d), A.1(h), A.2(b), A.3(b), B.2(c), C.2, E.3, G.1(b)].


Links to the “Appeal Decision Notice” and other associated documents (e.g. drawings, etc): 


·       Appeal Decision Notice: 

·       OS Map: 

·       Drawings: 





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