Councillors vote against recommendation

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Councillors have voted against a Planning Service recommendation to refuse permission on a proposed new dwelling in Ballycastle.

At Wednesday’s Planning Committee at Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council Shane Mathers of the Planning Service told councillors the reasons why the site at Glenshesk Road had been recommended for refusal.

“There are no compelling and site specific reasons to permit a dwelling at this location or has it been proved that a genuine hardship would be caused if planning were refused,” he said.

“Other alternatives exist to meet the applicant’s needs.”

Speaking on behalf of the applicants though was their son, Sean McHenry.

He explained his mother’s illness, which has caused mobility problems, has led them to apply to build this house closer to Ballycastle. He added his mother needed to be closer to amenities because of her mobility problems.

Mr McHenry also stated that because of his father’s business, which involves the breeding of blood stock horses, he needed to have land beside the property for surveillance and security, and the proposed site enabled him to do this.

Cllr Padraig McShane asked Mr McHenry if the decision to refuse planning permission would lead to his parents living separately.

Mr McHenry said it would be ‘unreasonable’ to suggest his parents live in separate houses. He said his father was his mother’s main carer and it would also be impossible financially.

“This site is the only site which fits the needs for both of my parents,” said Mr McHenry.

Cllr McShane proposed the committee reject the recommendation of the Planning Service on the grounds genuine hardship would arise.

This was seconded by Cllr Roisin Loftus.