A home extension to allow a young woman who has suffered renal failure and her family to live more comfortably was refused by planning councillors concerned it would set a building precedent for the area.
Planning officers had recommended Calderdale Council’s Planning Committee refuse Mr Muhammad Attiq’s application to build a two-storey extension at his home in Franklin Street, Halifax, on the grounds it would have an overbearing effect on the private amenity of neighbours due to its size and would be incongruous with the rest of the street.
Councillors expressed sympathy for Mr Attiq’s family’s situation but agreed the application – to which no one had objected – should be refused.
Councillor Faisal Shoukat (Lab, Town) spoke on the family’s behalf, removing himself from the committee and not voting on the application to allow him to do so.
He told councillors the extension would provide an extra toilet downstairs and an en suite room upstairs, plus a storage room for a dialysis machine and associated equipment, to help a young woman in her 20s who suffered from renal failure.
The application was submitted because of extenuating circumstances.
“I have helped the family for quite some time to get adequate housing and unfortunately there has been none,” he said.
An extension at the family’s existing home provided a solution and would be built using materials sympathetic to the area.
There had been no objections to the proposal because neighbours were sympathetic to the family’s plight and wanted to help.
Similar extensions could be seen on streets nearby, said Coun Shoukat.
Councillors were sympathetic but were concerned it would set a precedent for the area.
They asked planning officers if there was a way granting permission could be subject to conditions in such a way that applications for other similar extensions in the neighbourhood would not be allowed.
But the council’s planning service lead, Richard Seaman, said that could not be done, explaining that in general the Planning Inspectorate when considering appeals looked at any property in the long term as allowed extensions would be there in perpetuity even when individual families had moved on.
He said it did not appear that the application had been submitted as if it was for a disabled person.