RUBBLE IN PARADISE
BULLDOZE IT: $1M BARWON HEADS RENO MUST GO
Court orders woman to tear down half of her holiday home
A MILLION-DOLLAR home renovation in Barwon Heads will be bulldozed for breaching planning rules.
The Supreme Court has ordered the holiday home in Warrenbeen Court be partially demolished after its renovations exceeded building envelopes on the land.
The renovations at the holiday home in Warrenbeen Court, Barwon Heads.. A MILLION- DOLLAR home renovation in Barwon Heads will be bulldozed after it was found to breach plan- ning rules.
The Supreme Court has s ordered the holiday home on n Warrenbeen Court — owned d by Melbourne’s Vicki Wright t — be partially demolished d after its renovations exceeded building envelopes on the land.
The decision means rear pavilions at the home — including an indoor swimming pool, master bedroom and balcony — will be destroyed.
The two-year legal case was brought forward by neighbour Warwick Manderson, who argued the breaches had significantly reduced the value of his holiday home next door.
The renovations on Mrs Wright’s home were carried out between 2015 and 2016.
Justice John Dixon handed down his decision on Thursday, ordering the rear pavilions be demolished within 90 days.
However, no order was made on the restoration of endangered Moonah trees, which had been destroyed to make way for the renovation.
In delivering his ruling, Justice Dixon lambasted Mrs Wright for her conduct while carrying out the works.
“I am persuaded that the defendant did not act openly and in good faith,” he said.
“There was evidence of the defendant’s highhanded disregard of the plaintiff’s rights when the defendant and her agents refused to make details of the proposed works available to the plaintiff before such works substantively commenced.”
Justice Dixon said Mrs Wright also “pretended confusion” when the breach was explained to her.
“On the other hand, the plaintiff’s solicitor made clear demands — which the defendant rejected for a month — that the works immediately cease, during which time significant work towards completion of the pavilions was carried out,” he said.
“I am also satisfied that the works continued after the defendant represented to the plaintiff that she had directed that all work would cease.”
In the lead-up to the case, Mr Manderson accused the City of Greater Geelong of sitting on its hands as the responsible authority at a time Mrs Wright was knocking down endangered species and “building a monster”.
In defence, Mrs Wright had argued the council advised no planning permit was required when it was contacted in June 2014.
Mr Manderson said he was pleased to have “justice” but lamented Justice Dixon’s decision not to order any resto- ration of the Moonah trees.
He said an expert arborist had estimated up to 47 trees had been destroyed.
“I’m disappointed but not surprised that the court could give no recognition to the lost trees,” Mr Manderson said.
“(But) I’m pleased that the ESO (environmental significance overlay) that is now in place puts CoGG and the planning process as the first line of action. It is appalling that a private citizen had to take this on alone through the Supreme Court.”
Justice Dixon has proposed Mrs Wright pay $250,000 in damages to Mr Manderson. A costs hearing will take place on Wednesday.
“I am persuaded that the defendant did not act openly and in good faith.” JUSTICE JOHN DIXON
KNOCK IT DOWN: DOWN Neighbour N i hb Warwick W i kM Manderson d pictured it d at t his hi fence f line li in i 2016. 2016 I Inset t left: l ft Buildings outside the red line (building envelope) must be demolished following a ruling in the Supreme Court.