Opposition appears to be mounting against a planning application by King’s Ely to build two houses in the back garden of a house it owns in Ely’s protected conservation area.

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The City of Ely Council is among those urging East Cambridgeshire District Council to refuse the plan for a property in 35 St Mary’s Street, which it describes as “over development”.

The site would be reached down an access which leads to the car park of St Mary’s doctor’s surgery next door.

That access is not acceptable; say city councillors and that view is shared by the Ely Society, which is also objecting to the plan.

In consultation with planners, city councillors said: “Since Lloydspharmacy opened in the doctors’ surgery there has been an increase in the amount of traffic going in and out of the doctor’s car park. Vehicles leaving the site will be blind to those vehicles exiting the surgery car park.”

The planned houses would back on to Parade Lane. They would “dominate” the Victorian cottages at the Silver Street end of Parade Lane and have “a detrimental impact on the visual scene”, city councillors added.

Residents in Parade Lane and Silver Street are among those who have already lodged objections.

Elizabeth Sayers whose house and walled garden at 59 Silver Street would be overlooked says the plan would have an “unacceptable overbearing visual impact and loss of privacy”.

The plan would mean felling a number of trees, including some which are protected by tree preservation orders.

And retired architect, Frank Readhead, said: “The magnificent, large, mature deciduous trees in the garden of 35 St Mary’s Street contribute greatly to the character of the neighborhood. They could not survive such development as this, when their consequent loss would be detrimental to the character and appearance of the conservation area.”

35 St Mary’s Street has been used by the school as a boarding house and was previously a family home for the school’s deputy head. It is now surplus to requirements and the school plans to sell it.

The district council’s planning department is inviting comments from the public who have until February 22 to have their say.

Plan reference no. 13/01096/FUL, can be viewed at the district council offices or on-line.

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