“It is just packing people in like sardines – everybody’s on top of each other.”

Western Morning News

‘Garden grabbers are turning our street into Surrey’s cul-de-sac capital

    • ‘SATURATION POINT’: Paul Cannon is sick of ‘garden grabbers’

    That’s a view expressed by some Epsom Downs residents who say they are under siege from developers and the area’s infrastructure cannot cope with more homes built where lawns now lie.

    Gardens backing onto the area’s comfortable detached properties can measure up to 200 feet.

    The latest plans for Reigate Road were due to come before Reigate and Banstead Borough Council’s planning committee last night (Wednesday). Planning officers had recommended granting permission for the demolition of number 351, with 10 homes built on surrounding gardens, but refusing a similar application for 11 homes.

    The plans elicited 39 letters of objection, including one from MP Chris Grayling.

    Reigate Road resident Paul Cannon, 39, said the area had reached “saturation point”.

    “It is just packing people in like sardines – everybody’s on top of each other.

    “This whole area was designed in the 20s and 30s so people could have a bit of space, greenery and privacy.

That’s a view expressed by some Epsom Downs residents who say they are under siege from developers and the area’s infrastructure cannot cope with more homes built where lawns now lie.

Gardens backing onto the area’s comfortable detached properties can measure up to 200 feet.

The latest plans for Reigate Road were due to come before Reigate and Banstead Borough Council’s planning committee last night (Wednesday). Planning officers had recommended granting permission for the demolition of number 351, with 10 homes built on surrounding gardens, but refusing a similar application for 11 homes.

The plans elicited 39 letters of objection, including one from MP Chris Grayling.

Reigate Road resident Paul Cannon, 39, said the area had reached “saturation point”.

“It is just packing people in like sardines – everybody’s on top of each other.

“This whole area was designed in the 20s and 30s so people could have a bit of space, greenery and privacy.

“People want to unwind in their gardens after a long day at work and listen to the birds in the trees, not see some neighbour yanking down his Y-fronts, 25 feet away, in the upstairs window of his new sardine can.”

Commenting on the plans on the council’s website, Roger Grant said: “Welcome to the cul-de-sac capital of Surrey.” He also questioned why the road, where a multi-vehicle crash in April left a motorcyclist dead, had been determined as “safe”.

Traffic, and the strain on public services, were other reasons given for objection.

Reigate Road already has two other “infill” developments, with a third for 10 homes to the rear of number 377 granted permission earlier this year.

The borough council’s local plan permits “backland” development, if the general form of the area is maintained, the access road doesn’t cause undue disruption, and plots and spaces between buildings reflect those already there.

In their report to last night’s meeting, planners stated that distances between the proposed dwellings and adjacent properties were such that no loss of light, loss of privacy, significant noise and disturbance or overbearing impact would occur.

They added: “The proposal, when considered in the light of other similar examples in the locality, is considered to cause no harm to the character and amenities of the locality, or the amenity of neighbouring properties and is accordingly considered to be acceptable.”

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