HOUSE RENOVATION: Craig Warhurst. Photo Patrick Woods / The Gympie Times
HOUSE RENOVATION: Craig Warhurst. Photo Patrick Woods / The Gympie Times Patrick Woods

Complaint is ‘frivolous’

"UNSYMPATHETIC" renovations to a 1950's home in Channon St were in the spotlight at recent meetings of Gympie's heritage advisory committee and Gympie Regional Council.

A report and discussion on the two-storey family home stirred concern from Cr Mick Curran, who questioned why the council had to waste time addressing what he believed was a "frivolous complaint".

The complaint was made to the council, then referred to its heritage advisory committee, chaired by Cr Julie Walker, before being referred back to the council.

The Californian bungalow in question is owned by The Gympie Times' editor Craig Warhurst, and was added to Gympie's local heritage register about a decade ago.

Mr Warhurst said yesterday the home, built in 1959, had been slowly renovated in keeping with its original architectural style since he took possession in 2000.

There are numerous homes and buildings in Gympie on the local heritage register. Being registered does not impact owners' freedom to carry out renovations so long as they do not require a "material change of use" approval.

The council received an email on January 28, this year, that the Channon St house was "having unsympathetic alterations" made to the exterior of the existing dwelling.

A confirmation email was sent to the complainant, whose name was not mentioned, outlining the intent for discussion at the next heritage advisory committee meeting.

"The site is zoned Residential Choice (as opposed to Character Residential, which may have been the expectation), and is not included within Planning Scheme Schedule 4: Local heritage places," a council report on the matter states.

The alterations did not constitute a material change of use, therefore did not require a development application, it said.

"Dependent on the scale of alterations made, the landowner may have been required to lodge a building application, however there would at this stage appear to be no implications from a heritage perspective."

An excerpt from the local heritage register was shown to the committee, confirming some of the points made by the complainant.

Gympie Times


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