Knife-edge vote sees home plans turned down

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A ROW over an extension to a house in Berkhamsted that has embroiled neighbours and parish councillors came down to a knife-edge vote at a planning meeting.

Dacorum Borough Council’s development control committee was equally split on the merits of the scheme in Dukes Way, which sought to build a two-storey and single storey side extension.

Previous bids to build on the site last year caused controversy, with one neighbour claiming her human rights would be violated.

Councillor Laurence Handy, of Berkhamsted Town Council, told the meeting: “It creates an incongruous feature in a prominent corner location.”

But Edward Hunt, agent for the applicant, said the work was needed for a multiple sclerosis sufferer so they could stay on the ground floor. “This house extension is to fulfil those needs,” he said.

Committee chairman David Lloyd used his casting vote to block the plans, which councillors said would create a ‘terracing effect’.

This was in spite of officers’ advice to give the green light and a 12-strong petition in support.