A CONTROVERSIAL developer has withdrawn an application to demolish outbuildings and extend a property in Headington.

Neighbours of 29 Old High Street, Headington, owned by Martin Young, had raised no objection to plans to demolish outbuildings and extend the property.

But the East Area Planning Committee’s meeting at Oxford Town Hall on Tuesday was told the application had been withdrawn by phone.

The 19th century house, which sits in a conservation area, was bought in 1978 by property developer Mr Young and has been unoccupied for the past five years. The Friends of Old Headington Group had seen the new bid as a better option than a previous proposal for five townhouses.

But planning officers recommended refusal due to the “excessive size and bulk” of the proposed extensions.

Mr Young had a change of heart prior to the meeting and the application was withdrawn.

Speaking after the meeting Mr Young said: “We reached a point where the planners were still unhappy – I couldn’t find a way of doing what they wanted without wrecking my scheme.”