Blairs' renovation plan angers neighbours

Posted By: Staff
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London, Sep. 27 (ANI): Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair and at loggerheads with their neighbours after the couple planned to add a guesthouse to their 5.75-million-pound country mansion.

Tony and Cherie Blair want to turn a derelict gardener's cottage into a two-bedroom, two-bathroom house.

But neighbours have filed objections to plans submitted to Aylesbury council, accusing the Blairs of trying to "overdevelop" their historic estate, the Grade I listed South Pavilion in Wotton Underwood, Bucks.

"The application to create a new residential property within the grounds could set a dangerous precedent," News of the world quoted one of the neighbours, as saying in his complaint to the planners.

Since buying the former home of late acting legend Sir John Gielgud in August 2006, the Blairs have already angered neighbours over a car parking extension.

More objections were raised to the addition of a swimming pool in 2007.

Blairs have hired Templeton Associates to renovate their cottage, which has plans to extend the cottage from 70 to 120 square metres by adding a 'contemporary rear addition of glass and oak'.

Letters between the design team and a neighbour, included in their planning application, reveal the Blairs want to add solar panels.

However, they may face a struggle to get the plans approved.

According to the planning officer reviewing the application, developments like the Blairs' would only normally be allowed in areas known as "recognised settlements".

"The council would not normally allow a new dwelling in the countryside," he added.

Since leaving office Blair is thought to have earned around 17 million pounds and Cherie made a million from her memoirs. (ANI)

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