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50 medway_FotoSketcher.jpg
3-d visualisation of approved annex.


Medway Drive, Forest Row, Susex.


New residential annex including art studio and ancillary residential accommodation.

50 Medway Drive is a semi detached two storey property located on the north side of Medway Drive off Hartfield Road. It has an 'L' shaped residential curtilage that lies to the east of the property and extends up to the three garages that serve properties within the estate. There is an existing timber pitched summerhouse adjacent to the garages. The boundary of the property with Medway Drive is approximately 1.8m high being close boarded fencing. Small patio area and grass to the front of the summerhouse.

The application site comprises of a two storey semi detached dwelling located on the north side of Medway Drive off Hartfield Road. The property is of brick construction with a tiled roof. The dwelling has a pitched roof porch to the front elevation and a modest single storey conservatory to the rear elevation. To the side is a single garage with gates to the side for access into the rear gardens of the property. The application site is located inside the defined development boundary for Forest Row, within the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty with the Forest Way to the rear of the property.

Permission is sought to construct an annex within the garden to replace the existing summerhouse. Amendments have been sought during the process to alter the materials from rendered walls to brick built and to reduce the height of the annex to improve the design.

The proposed annex is considered to be of an acceptable scale, form and design that relate well to the host dwelling. On balance, the proposals are not considered to have an unacceptable impact on neighbour amenity, the streetscene or wider landscape. The scheme is in accordance with adopted local and national planning policy and guidance and approval is recommended.

Following an initial planning appraisal of the site it was decided when considering the proposed use and the applicants needs that a formal planning application  would be submitted to apply for a residential annex for the applicants aging father to allow for a level of independent living and an art studio where both the father and daughter could use.  The proposal will utilise a plastic polymer flat roof and mirror the adjacent built form to blend seamlessly into the street scene whilst augmenting the existing accommodation at the property.

Design/C&D Issues

The submited plans were not considered an appropriate design for the area being within Area of Outstanding natural beauty and therefore the agent discussed with the applicant and submitted amended drawings of a reduced scale and with
Impact on Adjoining Properties
No impact on the adjoining properties and a good natural gap between the properties will mean that the annexe will not appear dominant in the street or impact adversely on the neighbouring properties.
Impact on Street Scene or Wider Landscape
The site is visible within the street and the height of the annexe will be above the existing fence height. However the plans shows that the height of the annex will be no higher than the adjacent garages at 2. 75m and will therefore not appear dominant in the street scene.
Flood Risk Assessment
The property lies outside but adjacent to the flood zone to the north of the side.
Screening of Application under Habitats Regulations 2018
The proposal is not directly connected with or necessary to the management of the Ashdown Forest SPA and therefore it is necessary to determine if the proposal has a likely significant effect on the Ashdown Forest SPA.
The proposal does not change the use of the residence to a house in multiple occupation or create an additional dwellinghouse, nor allow for an additional household within the property.
Evidence shows that within 15 kilometres of Ashdown Forest that there is on average occupancy of 2 persons per dwelling. The housing stock within the area comprises of 29% 0-2 bedroom dwellings and 71 % 3+ bedroom dwellings*. Therefore evidence shows that a significant proportion of dwellings within the area are not fully occupied based on the number of bedrooms. Therefore it cannot be concluded that there is a proportionate correlation between increasing floorspace, in terms of bedrooms, and increase in the number of people per household.
Notwithstanding this, it is of relevance that visitor pressure relates to groups as well as individuals, and that a high proportion of visits were for the purposes of dog walking. Both the proportion of groups and the visits for dog walking relates more to the number of households as opposed to a small increase in the number of people within a household created by an increase in the number of bedrooms. This is of relevance as there is currently no evidence of a relationship between the number of bedrooms and dog ownership and where an increase in bedrooms accommodates a growing family, with dependant children.
The increase in floor space in the proposed development, including the provision of additional bedroom, is not directly related to an increase in the number of persons within a household and does not increase the number of households. Therefore it is considered that the development will not result in an increase to the potential of disturbance to the Dartford warbler and Nightjar by humans and recreational activities such as dog walking. Therefore it is concluded that the proposal will not have a likely significant effect on the Ashdown Forest SPA either alone or in combination .

Can I Use an Outbuilding as an Annex?

Do remember, it is not lawful to build an outbuilding for use as an annex under PD. Subject to various simple criteria, new outbuildings can be built in your garden for just about any purpose incidental to the use of your house as a single home, such as a home office, gym or workshop — but not for self-contained residential accommodation. You will need planning permission if an outbuilding is to be specifically built for the purposes of being an annex.

If you would like to find out more about how our Planning Consultancy and Architectural Design Services can work in perfect sync to achieve a successful outcome in the planning system please CONTACT US and we will be only too happy to talk through any questions or development proposals you may have.  


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Shropshire Office


Back Lane

Bomere Heath



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34 Queen Elizabeth Avenue

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PE30 4BX

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