Brockhurst School build staff homes without planning permission

An independent Berkshire school was forced to demolish a home built in its grounds without planning permission.

Brockhurst School, near Bucklebury, built two bungalows for staff accommodation but did not apply for permission.

When challenged by the council the school sought retrospective permission, which was initially declined, but granted for one building on appeal.

Nobody from Brockhurst School has been available for comment.

The bungalow was demolished by the school last month.

'Harmful' to AONB

West Berkshire Council refused the retrospective planning application because it "considered that the proposed scheme failed to demonstrate a functional need for additional residential accommodation at the school".

It also said: "The buildings were not considered to be of architectural merit and were harmful to the character and quality of the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB)."

An enforcement notice issued required the removal of the two properties, but the school appealed against this.

A planning inspector ruled that one of the bungalows should be demolished, but the other could remain.

A spokesperson for West Berkshire Council said: "The council has a duty to ensure that people follow the correct planning process and do not build wherever they like without the proper permissions.

"As part of this duty, they must enforce and sometimes order demolition if the rules are flouted.

"In this case, the school voluntarily demolished in order to comply with planning rules."

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