Company unveils new plan for unpopular builder’s yard eyesore

Neighbour Barbara Thomassen, photographed in October 2014, who was unhappy about the racks put up by Parker Building Supplies
Neighbour Barbara Thomassen, photographed in October 2014, who was unhappy about the racks put up by Parker Building Supplies

An application has been made to move an unpopular 18-foot metal timber rack in a builder’s yard.

Last year Parker Building Supplies (PBS) put up the rack, without planning permission, at their yard in Bellbrook Business Park in Beeching Road.

The rack immediately attracted criticism from nearby neigbours in Piltdown Close who compared the rack to “prison bars”.

In January the company put forward a belated planning application which offered to reduce the bars by 1.4m.

This application was rejected by Rother District Council which said the reduction made was not enough and said the rack had an “overbearing and oppressive effect on neighbouring properties”.

PBS has now put forward another retrospective planning application, and this time is suggesting the rack should be relocated to south-west of the site.

The new application will be discussed by councillors sitting on the district council’s planning committee but the application has received the backing of planning officers.

A report to the planning committed states: “In its current position, the tall rack has an unacceptable effect on the residential amenities of occupiers of the adjoining properties in Putdown Close due to its height and close proximity to the houses and their gardens.

“Members considered that this had resulted in an overbearing and oppressive effect and was one of the reasons that planning permission was refused earlier this year to retain it in its current position.

“In the newly proposed position, adjacent to the south-western boundary, the rack would be reasonably well separated from the closest residential properties and would not have any unacceptable effect on residential amenity.

“Its removal from the current position is to be welcomed.”

The report goes on to say the rack will be “clearly visible from the adjacent footpath”.

But the report notes that the path is already bordered by relatively tall stacks of bricks and blocks and currently does “not provide a particularly attractive

pedestrian environment”.

Planners have recommended that full planning permission should be granted.

A final decision was due to be made when the planning committee met (as the Observer went to press) on Thursday 9 April 2015 District Council between 9:30am to 1pm at Bexhill Town Hall.