Couple win planning blunder fight after noise forced them to wear earplugs to sleep

A family who said their lives had been made a living hell by a thundering main road just 9ft from their home have won a massive planning victory.

Jackie McCormack and her husband bought an “absolutely beautiful” three-bed new build for £350,000 in Coleshill, near Birmingham.

But as soon as they moved in, traffic from the busy A446 Lichfield Road meant they were beset by noise and fumes, turning their dream home into a nightmare before they had even unpacked.

But now North Warwickshire Borough Council have admitted a major planning blunder on the home where the family are constantly rocked by passing traffic, Birmingham Live reports.

“We moved in on the Friday and on Saturday it was absolutely horrendous,” recalled the 58-year-old mum, who moved in at the end of February.

The mum said she wished she could turn back the hands of time after relocating from their larger Victorian home in Kings Heath to live their dream in a detached property.

Despite viewing the property seven times before moving in the family said estate agents only let them see it on weekends when the road was at its quietest.

Jackie filed a complaint saying her “quality of life and mental health have suffered”, which kicked off a 17-month row with the council over whether it was legal for them to grant planning for houses so close to the dual carriageway.

Now it has emerged the council failed to properly acknowledge the conditions of the planning permission for their property.

In a report the Housing Ombudsman found the council had granted planning permission “without seeing a noise assessment report” and failing to show why one was not needed.

Her complaint was upheld, with the Ombudsman highlighting that Mrs McCormack’s “quality of life and mental health have suffered” as a result of the council’s mistake.

Jackie’s long battle has left her out of pocket and she has “suffered financially” after forking out for a noise impact assessment, alongside legal advice.

Alongside the noise from passing traffic, likened to a rock concert, the couple cannot open the windows for ventilation. Trickle vents installed in the windows “do not ventilate the rooms properly when the windows are closed”, the report continued.

North Warwickshire Borough Council offered to replace the windows – alongside other works – in a bid to resolve the issues. It said it had also “offered to work” with the couple to resell their home – if the works did not reduce the noise.

However the couple refused permission for the council to work to help reduce the road noise.

A statement from the authority read: “The Council has offered to implement the works that would have been required via the noise condition at its own expense.

“However Mr and Mrs McCormack have refused permission for this to happen.”