Historic house demolished: Berkhamsted Town Councillors ask whey they were not told

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Politicians say it is an outrage that a historic house in Berkhamsted has been demolished without planning permission.

Firm Chase Green Developments had been given planning permission to build 54 luxury homes in the grounds of New Lodge, off the town’s Bank Mill Lane.

The Gazette reported last week that the house – parts of which are thought to date back to the 16th or 17th century – has been demolished after being deemed unsafe.

Its owner had informally agreed with Dacorum Borough Council’s conservation officer that it could be dismantled and rebuilt.

Berkhamsted Town Council’s planning committee heard on Monday that approved plans were for the house to become four flats.

Town councillor Tom Ritchie said the committee could have discussed the altered plan during its two or three meetings since the conservation officer met the developer in August. Mr Ritchie said: “I think it is an outrage given the five years that the planning has taken.”

Chairman Laurence Handy said: “All the local residents were absolutely in fireworks, and it’s not only insulting to us – it’s insulting to them, quite frankly.”

A planning application for the new plan is due to be submitted within a month.