NIMBYism is alive and kicking within the upper echelons of ……

Burrington Estates Property Development Company!

From a Correspondent:

If you want to be aware of the epitome and personification of two-faced, hypocrisy, exhibiting double standards beyond belief . . . then read on!

How ironic it is to view the YouTube footage (below) of last week’s EDDC Planning Committee meeting (on 16th March 2022) where an Application (21/2989/FUL) for a demolition and re-build in West Hill Road, Ottery St Mary was recommended for approval by East Devon’s Development Manager and after discussion was subsequently approved by the Planning Committee.

(see Planning Committee Discussion/Decision on 21/2989/FUL – located 1hr/05mins into the meeting).

However, living next door to this new-build in West Hill Road, Ottery St Mary and vehemently objecting at the meeting to his neighbour’s proposals was a Director and Property Development Manager of Burrington Estates Limited.

He contributed as one of the opposition speakers, strongly objecting to this two-storey new build that he felt impacted on his adjoining property. He had previously instructed Burrington Estates’ associate professional planners (Avalon Planning) to object on his behalf to this application and consequently a complex list of executive-level planning objections had been prepared within an 8-page submission that was published on EDDC Planning Portal in the documents file for 21/2989/FUL.

Below are some of the objections included on the vast list submitted:-

Overdevelopment of the site with an appearance of cramming, resulting from the excessive scale, mass, height and form of the new development; inappropriate density and incongruous to the immediate surroundings; design is too contemporary with uncharacteristic design, shape, massing and finishes for the locality;  adverse effect on neighbouring property with overlooking, overshadowing and loss of daylight affecting both the home and garden by being too overbearing; too close proximity to existing neighbours detrimentally affecting the amenities enjoyed specifically concerning  privacy, outlook and artificial light spill; contrary to the character of the area; removal/loss  of trees that make a significant contribution to the character and ecological value of the local area; failing to protect the area’s cherished features; development in too close proximity to mature trees resulting in pressure to lop, thin or fell protected species in the future; loss of verdant character and appearance of the area; lack of respect for the key characteristics of the area, particularly the woodland character and the low density plots; detrimental removal of boundary vegetation/trees to provide additional access; unacceptable impact on neighbouring property with no thought minded to neighbours whose outlook and sense of comfort within their home and garden will be detrimentally impacted; increased heights creating additional viewpoints into private gardens and habitable rooms of neighbours; inadequate provision of parking for the new development;  contrary to the Neighbourhood and EDDC Local Plans et al.

At this point, Clyst Valley Road residents in Clyst St Mary will definitely have a feeling of déjà vu because the above objections are almost identical to those that the residents of Clyst St Mary have submitted in opposition to the 40 (equivalent to 5-storey) apartments, with associated service road and multiple parking spaces that Burrington Estates (including the above-featured Property Development Director) have proposed adjacent to residents’ Winslade Park homes and gardens that will tower above the existing woodland area (which provides screening to their homes) and encroaches adjacent to their boundaries  . .  and furthermore Burringtons intend cutting down significantly more TPO protected trees than one West Hill Road cherry tree to achieve these incongruous 40 multi-storey flats on a limited car park site!

Such behaviour seems to display a double standards attitude being practised by property developers and the old adage ‘Practise What You Preach’ comes to mind!

The residents of Clyst St Mary have always been of the opinion that appropriate quality development in a small rural village adjacent to existing homes is acceptable – but can anyone else highlight where 40 (equivalent to 5-storey) flats exist in a small East Devon pastoral settlement – because such designs are, surely, more fitting in an urban locality?

To end on a positive note, both Burrington’s Development Director and the residents of Clyst St Mary obviously are in complete agreement on what should and should not be built next to our homes both in West Hill, Ottery St Mary and the village of Clyst St Mary.

So this would seem a good place to point out that Burringtons should follow their own advice (that was voiced at the meeting on 16th March) to withdraw the current application in favour of a new application that is far more suitable for the locality and apply those principles to their Winslade Park Zone D application.

In 2020 residents supported Burrington’s design proposals for 14 traditional homes for this Winslade Park car park (that were displayed to all at the Public Consultation at the Village Hall) as highly sustainable and appropriate – but unfortunately Burrington Estates subsequently decided to substitute the 14 homes with 40 towering (equivalent to 5-storey) multiple-occupancy flats, resulting in entirely different plans being submitted to East Devon Planners in this location. These inappropriate plans are still awaiting a decision by EDDC Planners but are due to be heard by Committee in the near future and it is hoped that elected and professional local authority planners will agree that looking forward multi-storey flats do have a developmental role and  place  –  but that place is not in the village of Clyst St Mary!

There is no doubt that when property development encroaches into anyone’s back yard – then it becomes a personal issue – people and, indeed, most species are innately territorial.  It is a human trait to passionately defend our homes (and that is seen as a worthy characteristic) and most people will display some NIMBYism in similar circumstances.

However, to inflict incongruous development on a community when you have a personal,  professional awareness of the plethora of detrimental issues that will harm other people is both unacceptable and totally hypocritical – so shame on you Burringtons – what goes around comes around . . . and sometimes fate will make you face your own personal nemeses! 

One thought on “NIMBYism is alive and kicking within the upper echelons of ……

  1. Exactly the behaviour we have all come to expect from property developers and Burringtons are no different! Their website advertises their philosophy:-

    “We carefully select the best locations . . . . . while making positive contributions to the community.”

    “A belief in quality not quantity . . . Volume house building has never been for us.”

    What utter hogwash!

    Clyst St Mary is a village and they have already built the Greenspires development of 80 homes relatively recently but now they are being asked to accept even more large-scale expansion, when other areas don’t seem to get more than one or two extra homes! Enough is enough for this small community; it only has one shop and the traffic is horrendous!

    Now the residents are being subjected to 40 flats at around 5 storeys high, overlooking existing homes and gardens, when Burringtons had indicated only modest proposals of 14 homes at a Public Consultation! This is unscrupulous behaviour but at least the people have some satisfaction in knowing that this Burrington Director, who has exhibited such double standards, has got his comeuppance with this infamous publicity!

    I expect he will move to another million pound home away from the new construction taking place next door to him, which is a luxury that, I guess, many of the Clyst St Mary residents won’t be able to afford? These 40 flats should never be built in this village.

    If Burringtons think that they can ‘diss’ anyone and everyone to achieve their goals – they may find people will associate them with other ‘dis’ words like disreputable, dishonourable, dishonest and disgraceful?

    So Burringtons do the right thing and build something decent in place of these blocks of 40 flats at 5 storeys that will be a blot on the landscape! You are capable of designing something much better . . . so prove it!


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