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Dermot Bannon wins 'open bathtub' planning battle with neighbour

Bannon didn’t have planning permission for the outdoor structures where the bathtub is located.

Image: Rollingnews

CELEBRITY ARCHITECT DERMOT Bannon has emerged victorious in his ‘outdoor bathtub’ planning battle with a neighbour at his revamped Dublin home.

This follows Dublin City Council granting planning retention for Bannon’s two storage sheds and a covered external space that houses the much talked about open bathtub at his family home at Valentia Rd in Drumcondra.

In January, 640,000 RTÉ viewers watched on as Bannon celebrated with celebrity gardener Diarmuid Gavin. They as they surveyed the completion of the €600,000 revamp job on the house Bannon purchased for €895,000.

The two-part Room to Improve on the renovation was a massive ratings winner for RTE.

However, it transpired that Bannon didn’t have planning permission for the outdoor structures where the outdoor tub is located at the end of the Bannon garden and an application was lodged to retain the structures on 31 January with Dublin City Council. 

The application only came after planners opened an enforcement file and issued a warning letter concerning the structures.

The drawings lodged by Bannon’s architectural practice show the two storage sheds and the external bath covered by a canopy.

In response to the planning application, a neighbour on Valentia Rd, Susan Taylor lodged an objection with the Council against the retention of the two storage sheds covering 17.3m2 and the covered external space covering 20.2sq m.

Taylor told the council that “the structure is not in keeping with the character of the area constructed of corrugated metal roof”.

Taylor also argued that “the use of the proposed development is not in keeping with the residential amenity of the area as evidenced by the exposed and open bathtub”.

Taylor told the Council “the application for development should be refused”.

However, the Council has now granted planning retention for the structures after a planner recommended the green light for the proposal.

‘attractive and high-quality design’

As part of the five conditions attached to the permission, the Council has stated that the storage sheds shall not be used for human habitation or for the keeping of pigs, poultry, pigeons, ponies or horses or for any use other than as a use incidental to the enjoyment of the home.

The Council has also attached a condition that the storage sheds shall not be put to commercial use, and their use shall be only incidental to the enjoyment of the principal dwelling on site. 

The city council planner in the case stated that the concerns expressed by Taylor have been taken into account in the assessment of the application. 

The planner recommended that planning be granted  after concluding that “the 
sheds are well designed and contemporary in their appearance.” 

The planner stated: “Due to their attractive and high-quality design the visual amenities of the property will be enhanced.”

The report added: “Having regard to their single-storey nature, overall height and proximity to party boundaries they will not result in any undue overshadowing, any overlooking or have an overbearing impact on any adjoining properties. 

It further added: “The objection received states that their use is not appropriate in this residential area.”

However, the planner stated that “their use for storage and other ancillary residential purposes is considered by the planning authority to be entirely appropriate“.

The Council report further stated that the objection does “not warrant ground for invalidation or grounds for refusal”. 

The report concluded that the proposed development to be retained “would not seriously injure the amenities of the local area, or of the property in the vicinity”. 

“The proposed development to be retained would, therefore, be in accordance with the proper planning and sustainable development of the area”

Bannon has previously talked about why he wanted an outdoor bath, saying: “I love sea swimming and I love the hot and the cold so we have put a bath outside the house.”

About the author:

Gordon Deegan

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