Proper reports into basement development are essential

No-one loves basements except the applicants but basement applications must be objected to on the basis that are contained within planning/building regulation – and each application should be accompanied by full geology and hydrology reports which will de

No-one loves basements except the applicants but basement applications must be objected to on the basis that are contained within planning/building regulation - and each application should be accompanied by full geology and hydrology reports which will determine whether damage and instability will be caused to the underground water courses and neighbouring properties.

They will also identify any need for preventative works to the foundations of properties in close proximity prior to the start of any works or soil removal.

Cllr Roberts and I were pleased to read that the Heath and Hampstead Society and the Highgate Society have joined forces in approaching the council and helping to form solid policy on basements in the Hampstead and Highgate area by pushing existing planning guidance, which is there to be used, (H&H letters January 21).

What saddens us most is that up and till now objection to these applications have often depended upon the depth of neighbours' pockets to be able to seek professional and legal advice.


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As Tony Hillier states, many of the geotechnical analysis reports have not been correctly assessed and we will be encouraging and cajoling the council to:

q Assess the whole geology and hydrology of the Hampstead & Highgate area where basement works will cause problems.

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q Postpone any decisions on any current applications that do not have either geology or hydrology reports and ask the applicants to provide them before progressing them further, whether these are fresh applications or renewals.

q Provide or access professional advice to asses these technical reports to determine their validity

Tony Hillier also warns that ''local residents have the expertise to take the next test case through the courts to prove the point" and we as ward councillors for Hampstead Town will add our voices in total support and look forward to the introduction of the Local Development Framework, which contains draft policies which will help to control basement development.

Cllr Chris Knight

Cllr Kirsty Roberts

(Conservative) Hampstead

Town Ward

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