Anna Friel's planning drama after neighbour complains

Anna Friel's house
Anna Friel's house

Anna Friel has become the latest celebrity to become embroiled in a planning drama with her local council. She has built a single story extension on the back of her beautiful Georgian house, but a neighbour complained, and now the council aren't happy. They are trying to have it demolished, but Friel has decided to fight back.

See also: Grandmother ordered to demolish extension that cost life savings

See also: TV presenter denied the right to an extension - despite secluded location

See also: Neighbours at loggerheads over 50ft hedge

The extension to her £1 million house had planning permission. According to The Telegraph, it included lowering the floor of the basement, adding new windows and doors on the ground floor, and building an en-suite shower room.

Anna Friel attending the British Independent Film Awards, at Old Billingsgate Market, London.
Anna Friel attending the British Independent Film Awards, at Old Billingsgate Market, London.

Once the permission was in the bag, she could have been forgiven for assuming that she was home and dry. However, she lives in a conservation area near Windsor Castle, where the rules are particularly strict, and has fallen foul of one of them.

The council claims it did not approve the bricks, roof tiles, mortar and render of the extension. It ordered her to complete 'remedial works' (which would essentially mean demolishing it and starting again) in November last year, and she had two months to comply.

Now the Daily Mirror has reported that Friel has started a fightback, and has lodged an appeal with the national Planning Inspectorate. It will come to a conclusion in April

Celebrity planning

Friel isn't the first celebrity to run into planning issues. Chris Tarrant was refused planning permission last September. He had wanted to build an extension to his secluded country home, but it took the property over 50% bigger than its original size, so his application was rejected - despite the fact that nobody would be able to see it.

Meanwhile, a year earlier, George Clooney had been told to demolish a fence along the Thames at his £10 million Berkshire mansion, because it was too close to the water.

A few years before that Colin Firth was refused permission to install a solar panel on his Chiswick home, because the council decided it was unsightly.

However, celebrities do sometimes get the upper hand. Last year, Benedict Cumberbatch was given the go-head to renovate his £2.7 million Camden home, despite complaints from neighbours who claimed his balcony would overlook their properties and that a proposed new boiler room would be noisy.

A day earlier, it emerged that Bake Off's Sue Perkins and her neighbours had successfully stopped their neighbour from building a bungalow at the bottom of the garden - on the grounds it would open the door to unscrupulous developers.