Councillors have agreed to changes to previously approved plans for almost 50 new homes amid neighbours’ concerns over privacy and ‘loss of identity’.

The proposal by Lynch Homes features 42 two storey detached houses, with a small number of bungalows, north of Barassie Farm.

It was given the go ahead by South Ayshire Council’s regulatory panel on Thursday, February 2.

Planning permission for housing on the site had previously been approved, but the developer sought permission to make alterations to the plan, including changes to house types and individual property boundaries.

Five objections were raised by people living adjacent to the site.

These included complaints that the two storey houses proposed on the plots nearest to the existing houses would ‘overwhelm’ existing one story houses, and would overlook other houses.

They also suggested that these homes should become single storey building to reduce the impact on those neighbouring homes.

In a report, council planners responded: “The letters of objection relate to the effect on the privacy and amenity of the existing housing at Collennan.

“It is not considered that the concerns raised by the objectors are sufficient to merit refusal of the application.”

Independent councillor Brian Connolly sought clarity around the previous approval.

He said: “The objectors are fairly consistent about the reasons for  their objections.”

Cllr Connolly (Maybole, North Carrick and Coylton) asked for confirmation that the previous approval included two storey houses overlooking the existing housing.

Planning officer Alan Edgar replied: “That’s correct. There is extant planning permission in place for houses in these locations and they are two storeys.

“In terms of overlooking, there aren’t any windows in the elevations facing towards the established houses and there are blank gables.

“There is also a landscaped area in between which is going to be planted with tress to further protect privacy of established houses.”

Councillor Craig Mackay (SNP, Troon) acknowledged that the panel was limited in what it could do given the previously approved application.

But he raised concerns about the impact on the residents of Collennan and their wish to retain the settlement’s identity.

He said: “One big component is the way it wraps around Collennan, which is quite a small cluster of houses and smallholdings.

“I have raised this with ARA [the Ayrshire Roads Alliance] in terms of maybe getting some signage on the main road to advise of Collennan.

“I am wondering if there is scope for developers for a gesture to put signage there”.

Craig Iles, the authority's head of planning, responded that the signage would not be for planning to pursue. However, he suggested having discussions directly with the developer.

Kevin Braidwood, ARA's head of roads, agreed to raise the issue with the developer.

Councillor Mackay also raised the issue of a bridge that was meant to be put in place in another plot within the Troon housing masterplan. He said that, while being a different developer, it would have an impact on residents of the new proposal.

He asked whether the council could put a condition in place that would prevent people moving into houses until the bridge is constructed and that phase is complete.

Mr Iles said that conditions on the development seeking approval would not be appropriate, as it was an issue of monitoring the other plot’s compliance with planning conditions.

However, he agreed to investigate the matter separately.

Councillor Connolly suggested that the assurances that the two storey buildings had been in the previously approved permission were enough to support the application.

This was agreed and the application was passed unanimously.