TWO Helensburgh doctors are battling to replace 30 windows at their home which are leaving it cold in winter and stuffy in summer.

Nicholas and Gillian Dunn had plans rejected by Argyll and Bute Council in July to install new windows at their house in the town.

But the council’s local review body is due to meet today (Thursday) to discuss a bid to overturn the planning department’s verdict.

An architect has described the property as “cold in winter, warm and stuffy in summer, and difficult to safely clean at any time”.

The panel for the meeting will consist of Mid-Argyll, Kintyre and the Islands councillors Rory Colville, Robin Currie and Alastair Redman.

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No Helensburgh and Lomond councillors are involved as it is the norm for members not to sit on a local review body for a development in their administrative area of Argyll and Bute.

The Dunns are represented in their case by architect Chris Doak, who outlined the reasons for the plans and pointed to planning permission being granted for similar changes at a nearby property.

Mr Doak said: “The applicants are long-term residents of Helensburgh. With a large family, and in need of a bigger home and additional accommodation, they moved into [the address] in 2017.

“In order to make the house look more visibly appealing to buyers, the previous owners had employed someone to paint the windows on both the outside and the inside.

“The painting was carried out in a rushed and irresponsible manner, and no attempt was made to ensure that the windows could be subsequently opened.

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“The windows of the house are a mixture of timber sash and case and timber casement. All are single glazed.

“The house is cold in winter, warm and stuffy in summer, and difficult to safely clean at any time. Attempts to free the windows have revealed multiple areas of rot in the cills and frames, indicating that they cannot be economically repaired.

“Throughout the long assessment period of the application, we supplied the case officer with detailed manufacturer’s technical information on the replacement windows.

“But permission was refused on July 9, 2019.

“For reasons unknown, the council delayed sending out the decision notice for another four weeks.

“Three days before our application, Argyll and Bute Council granted planning permission at [a nearby property in the same street] for the replacement of seven, no-timber, single glazed windows to UPVC double-glazed, of the same style and appearance.”

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Mr Doak expressed disappointment that the council seemed unaware of the continuing development of window technology and were unsatisfied by the manufacturer’s information supplied to them.

He added: “Thirty windows are stuck and unopenable, and to replace them with timber replacements would require a hefty financial outlay for the applicants.”

The Dunns said in their own statement: “Whilst we understand the need to conserve and preserve architectural detail, we feel that refusal of planning permission in this case is unjustified.

“Our current windows are in such a state of deterioration that they could be considered dangerous.

“It is not our wish to detract from the appeal of the property or the surrounding neighbourhood. We only wish to improve the long term viability of the fabric of the house.”

A spokesperson for Argyll and Bute Council said: “We are unable to comment as the matter is yet to be considered by the Local Review Board, which takes place on Thursday.”

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