MP’s office plans rejected over UPVC windows in conservation area
Elgan Hearn, local democracy reporter
A Conservative MP has been refused planning permission to change the use of a building in Llandrindod Wells from a shop to office, and to install UPVC windows.
In March 2021, Fay Jones, the MP for Brecon and Radnorshire applied for retrospective planning permission to change her constituency base at Leamington House on Temple Street from retail to office use
She also wanted to replace a “rotting wooden door and window frame” with similarly coloured UPVC – which is a form of plastic that is used as a wood substitute.
Letters lodged with the application say that the UPVC windows were needed as a security measure for MP’s.
Llandrindod Wells Town Council had objected to the application as it is in the town’s conservation area and the expectation is that wooden replacement windows would be used not plastic.
Llandrindod Wells Town Council said: “Historically, other applications have been refused for this exact point.
“The council feels if this application is approved this will set a precedent for other applications within the conservation area”.
Powys County Councillor for Llandrindod East/West Jon Williams said he was supportive of the change of use application.
But on the window replacement Cllr Williams said: “I do not support the replacement of the wooden window and door with UPVC replacements, as this property lies within the conservation area so goes against policy.
“Other properties within this area have also be bound by this policy and to treat this application differently, without mitigating circumstances, would be unfair.”
The Powys County Council planning report said: “Justification has been provided in support of the application justifying the requirement of UPVC windows based on security grounds.
“When pressed for additional information, it was confirmed from correspondence that UPVC was considered the most cost effective and quickest way to provide security to police recommended standards.
“No evidence however has been further provided which confirms that the existing timber windows and doors was considered either less secure and that alternative options were otherwise first explored.
“On this basis, I do not consider that the reasons put forward as above overrides the concerns raised above to the character and appearance of the conservation area.
“I therefore confirm that the proposed development is considered to be contrary to relevant planning policy and the recommend refusal.”
Miss Jones has been asked for a comment.
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UPVC double glazing is about as secure as not having any doors and windows. Two twists of a screwdriver would see each of those panes fall out of the frame.
Mind you, this is Fay Jones, not likely to raise the average IQ in a nursery class so she may actually believe her own BS.
Kerry, it does depend a great deal on the quality of the frame configuration. There are good uPVC windows just as there are good wooden frames which will last a long time if properly maintained. The issue at Lland’od is quite straightforward. It’s a matter of rules and regulations that apply to that zone of the town. Fay as a good old law and order advocate would have made sure that whatever work would get undertaken complied with the prevailing rules……. ah, but she’s a Tory M.P, one of that bunch of privileged oiks famous for making rules for the… Read more »
I’m interested that she is applying for “retrospective planning permission”. So has she already changed the windows or is the retrospective bit just on the change of use?