'Life-changing': Porch to give disabled man independence approved at appeal
- Credit: Toni Richardson
A Romford man with cerebral palsy has won his "long battle" to get planning permission for a porch he needs to live independently.
The approval was granted by a planning inspector after Havering Council rejected Taylor Dolman's application for a porch extension earlier this year.
Mother Toni Richardson appealed this decision to the Planning Inspectorate, who overruled the council on the grounds that the proposed porch "would result in very significant benefits to the health and wellbeing of the occupiers".
Toni received the good news on July 9, days before Taylor's 21st birthday and as she was busy planning his celebrations.
She said: "It's going to be life-changing.
"I'm really pleased and quite shocked to be honest.
You may also want to watch:
"It was so wonderful to have such a great weekend, with two celebrations."
Toni applied for permission to build the porch almost a year ago because she currently has to get out a ramp by hand each time Taylor enters or leaves the house.
- 1 How did your Havering GP surgery score in NHS patient survey?
- 2 New Home Bargains store to open in Romford
- 3 10-storey block expansion of 700-home development in Rainham gets go-ahead
- 4 Free swimming for schoolchildren in Havering launched ahead of Olympics
- 5 Romford drama students to feature alongside celebrities in new WW2 film
- 6 Four-car crash in Havering-atte-Bower reignites calls for 20mph speed limit
- 7 Secondary schools in Havering rated outstanding by Ofsted
- 8 Havering residents warned of weed which can cause ‘severe blistering’
- 9 Thunderstorms and possible flooding forecast for east London
- 10 120-home development on Harold Hill college site approved
However, Havering Council’s planning officers refused the proposal in December because, they said, the porch would “form an unacceptably dominant and visually intrusive feature in the streetscene, harmful to the appearance and character of the surrounding area”.
However, the planning inspector argued that the "proposed development would not harm the character and appearance of the area".
Celebrating the news, Toni said: "Common sense has finally prevailed.
"There's a way to go, but the porch is going to happen and I'm delighted."
The mother-of-two said her friends who also have disabled children had watched the process closely, and were disappointed when the original application was rejected.
"This gives them some hope," Toni said.
"So many people give up, but this sends a positive message.
"It has been a long battle, and it took a lot out of me, but it was worth it."
Toni said she found the process difficult, adding: "I won't be going to the council if an emergency comes up in the future."
A spokesperson for Havering Council said: “We carefully considered her application before reaching our decision and we respect that the planning inspector has reached a different view.
"We’re sorry to hear that Ms Richardson felt that the process was difficult.
“We will reflect on the outcome and have this in mind when we consider future applications in similar circumstances.”