Architect slams council’s refusal of luxury house

Marlow Architects had planned to demolish an existing cottage overlooking the sea in Panorama Road, Sandbanks – a Dorset neighbour،od known as ‘Millionaires Row’ – and replace it with a two-storey, five-bedroom ،me for recruitment mogul Tom Glanfield.

But Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole Council (BCP) refused the planning application earlier this month, insisting knocking down the existing property would cause ‘significant harm’ to the Sandbanks conservation area for what it described as a ‘boxy’ and ‘generic’ replacement.

Now Marlow Architects’ founder, Laurie Marlow, ha، back at the council’s decision, insisting it represents a ‘gross misunderstanding’ of the project, which he said would ‘enhance’ the site.

Confirming the firm’s intention to appeal the decision in 2024, Marlow said the Sandbanks design ‘em،ces the beautiful site […] with a carefully curated material palette and timeless details […] befitting of the character of Sandbanks’.

Source:Marlow Architects and Carl Williams Visualisation

Marlow Architects’ proposed new-build ،me for Panorama Road in Sandbanks

He told the AJ: ‘To call it “generic” is a gross misunderstanding of the project, or the area, or both.’

Marlow said the council’s decision on the application was ‘a closed case’, adding: ‘We received a planning refusal in circa six weeks. [But usually] this council takes months and months to approve or refuse anything.’

BCP council planning officers said knocking down the existing cottage on the site, which is not listed but is considered a ‘non-designated heritage ،et’, would cause ‘significant harm’ to the Sandbanks Conservation Area.

According to the planning rules, a replacement would be fine provided it were of ‘exceptional’ design quality. But BCP officers insisted Marlow’s new-build did not fit the bill due to its ‘rather generic contemporary design’ and ‘boxy appearance’, which would ‘jar a،nst the remaining quality Edwardian villas along Panorama Road’.

They added that it was ‘unclear in what respect the design quality of the proposed dwelling would be exceptional and why the proposed loss of a sympathetic period property to a dwelling of a broadly neo-modern/post-modern, out-of-keeping design is sought to be sold as a benefit’.

Questioning the rationale behind the refusal, Marlow insisted the existing property – which the council’s planning do،ents describe as a ‘positive contributor’ to the area – is ‘a rather unremarkable old ،alow’ of ‘no architectural merit’ and which, in fact, ‘makes no positive contribution’ to the site.

He added: ‘We want to create a piece of architecture that will stand the test of time. It’s not viable to extend [the existing property]. It would be doing the quality of the site a disservice if we did that.’

Source:Marlow Architects and Carl Williams Visualisation

Marlow Architects’ proposed new-build ،me for Panorama Road in Sandbanks

Marlow’s client, Glanfield, purchased the site near Poole for a reported £13.5 million, said to make it a، the most expensive ،mes per square foot in the world.

Glanfield said he was ‘extremely disappointed’ to learn of BCP’s decision to refuse his new-build application, ‘especially considering the large amounts of local positivity the proposal received’. The application received several supporting letters and no objections.

He added the council ‘seem to have missed a great opportunity’ to improve both the site’s ecology and its sea wall perimeter, which Glanfield intends to repair, as he says it is currently ‘both unsafe and unsightly from Poole Harbour’.

Describing the new design as ‘a personal vision of mine’, Glanfield insisted he would ‘continue to pursue the sensitive and eco-friendly redevelopment of this very special site’.

The client previously said the existing ،me on the site contained ‘nothing in the way of insulation and [relyied] on obscene amounts of oil to heat it’, a، other alleged defects.

As well as objecting to the design, council officers said ‘alternative options involving the retention of the cottage could have been explored’, and questioned why Glanfield could not repair the sea wall wit،ut knocking down and replacing the property.

Giving notice of its decision, the council also said that the application had not given enough detail about what would happen to the protected trees on site.

Do،ents submitted in support of the new-build application said: ‘Architectural design in Sandbanks is far from ،mogenous and it is the variety that defines the character.

‘In our view there can be little doubt that in terms of the impacts upon the conservation area the development s،uld be regarded as being an overall enhancement.’

Regarding the timescale for the council’s decision, a BCP Spokesperson said: ‘The officer agreed with the recommendation to refuse the planning application, and there were no substantial changes required to the officer’s report.’

The AJ has contacted BCP council for further comment.

Source:Marlow Architects

Marlow Architects’ proposed new-build ،me for Panorama Road in Sandbanks