A FORMER village scout hut, which has been left to rot, could be turned into a four-bedroom home despite a slew of objections.

The derelict building on Main Street in East Challow, near Wantage, was used as a scout hut until the group disbanded 16 years ago.

Vale of White Horse District Council planners were due to make a decision on the future of the disused hut during a meeting last week.

But councillors were 'uncomfortable' moving forward without inspecting the property, so they chose to defer their decision to January as site visits are currently not permitted until the end of the second lockdown on December 2.

The controversial application includes demolishing the hut and replacing the existing storage building with a detached garage with storage space in the roof.

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Councillor Paul Barrow, who is a member of the East Challow parish, highlighted that building a two-floor house into the 'minute' space would prove a problem.

He explained: "The proposed dwelling is squeezed into a really small space with six inches on one side of the house and three feet on the other, next to an existing garage.

"The area is actually much more crammed than it is depicted on the council's plan."

Mr Barrow also addressed the committee on behalf of a neighbour who's home and garden would be affected by the dwelling.

The councillor commented: "The proposed house profile would be seven meters above their back garden, thereby creating significant light blocking.

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He also pointed out that the narrow footpath on Main Street, which is already used by ten cars, will now be even busier.

Resident Dr Angela Parfitt, whose property lies to the East of the development with parking area and garage immediately adjacent to the proposed dwelling, also confirmed that the work would 'further limit' access to the narrow footpath, which is ' difficult at the best of times'.

Mr Barrow also claimed that with the increasing population of the village, the local scout group is 'seriously considering' restarting a group again.

A number of strong-worded objections were already made from the parish council and at least seven neighbours.

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These focused on overdevelopment in the area, negative impact on highway safety and loss of natural light for locals.

Parishioners also objected on the grounds of 'loss of community facility' despite that the hut has been abandoned for more than a decade.

The council also confirmed that there has been no serious interest from community groups in the area and with the recent renovation of East Challow's village hall the hut is not considered an 'economically viable asset'.

Architect of the project Dixey Lewis, who addressed planners at the meeting, revealed that the large family hoping to move in the planned four-bedroom home live yards away and are already part of the community.

The planning committee will again debate the proposal on Wednesday, January 6, when members are expected to make a decision.