A SCHOOL expansion funded by the council has prompted backlash from locals who claim the construction of a new sports hall is ‘outside the permitted area’ and is “illegal”.

The Glebe Close and Stevens Close Residents’ Association lambasted Buckinghamshire Council and Holmer Green Senior School over a new sports facility some claim is “overbearing” and ‘light-cancelling’ because they say it is “outside of the permitted planning permission”.

Bucks Free Press:

RESIDENT: 'The hall is virtually in my back garden'

The council said “the building is being constructed in accordance with the approved plans in the correct location”.

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The controversy follows, but is separate to, the council’s refusal last year for retrospective planning permission for a so-called “air dome” covering an on-site sports area.

The school recently revealed its intention to appeal the decision.

Now, some locals claim the new facility is “ten metres closer” than on the original plans, casting a shadow over some of their gardens.

They also claim the council and school have been unresponsive to concerns, which the school denies receipt of.

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Bucks Free Press:

RESIDENT: 'This monstrosity is somewhat overbearing'

“I simply woke up one morning to discover the hall is virtually in my back garden,” said resident Oliver Martin.

“While I’m not against sports hall facilities, I am against buildings being built off their agreed plans.”

Mr Martin contests the hall’s location, saying: “This sports hall is now ten metres closer than on [the] plans and is extremely overbearing to several properties.”

He added: “Trying to get simple communication from either the school or the council is a waste of time as they are ignoring [us] and purposely doing nothing to answer any of our questions.”

Bucks Free Press:

PICTURED: The 'air dome' illuminated at night 

Another resident also claimed the sports hall is being built “outside of the permitted planning permission”, adding they believe this is “illegal”.

“This monstrosity is somewhat overbearing and casts shadows right across our garden and will undoubtedly cause light loss and dark shadows all year round,” they said.

Resident Denis Brill said “views, amenity and disturbance to local residents have been totally ignored”.

He added the hall had been “moved nearer the boundary than the original planning permission”.

The school said a public consultation meeting was held in the school on December 17, 2019. A consultation process then ran until January 10, 2020, “when full plans were available”, it said.

“We have not had any communication from local residents about the construction of the sports hall,” a school spokesman added.

A planning application was approved in June 2020, according to the council.

A Bucks Council spokesman said: “Residents did submit an accusation to the council’s enforcement officer and the school.

“In response to this, the officer visited the site and inspected the works. They concluded that the building is being constructed in accordance with the approved plans in the correct location.”

Adding: “Willmott Dixon are a considerate contractor and as such have been keeping the locals up to date with ongoing works as they progress on site. They have a contact on site whose details are readily available for locals if they have any issues with any aspects of their works.”

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