People react to home extension objections over 'cooking odours'

Social media users have reacted to an objection for a proposed home extension in Great Barr – based on “cooking odours”.

27 Monksfield Avenue. Photo: Google
27 Monksfield Avenue. Photo: Google

The owners of the property were given the green light to build a new bedroom, kitchen and living room space in Monksfield Avenue.

But Sandwell council planners received mixed responses for the construction of a single and two storey rear extensions at 27 Monksfield Avenue, Great Barr.

The proposed plan aims to create a new kitchen and additional living space at ground floor level. One additional bedroom at first floor level is also proposed, creating a four bedroom property.

Attending Sandwell Council’s planning committee meeting last Wednesday evening, applicant Mr J Singh was visibly confused by one objection, listed as "cooking odours", by neighbouring residents.

He said: “The objection to cooking smells? I don’t know why that’s been raised. Is it because I am of Asian background? Why is there an objection to cooking? Is that just to increase the number of objections?

“I’m not proposing to run a restaurant there. It’s my family, I can cook whatever I want in my house, and there are extra funds and anything that can be done to make sure that those things can be minimised.”

Gurinder Singh Josan, from Smethwick, wrote: “Genuinely shocked that fear over cooking smells can be cited as a planning objection to a house extension in amazingly diverse #Sandwell in 2021.”

Lee McCarthy said: “I’d love to live next door to Asian and Indian families. Beautiful food freshly made (unlike the English rubbish) nice clientele of people usually extremely friendly and generous. Leave the poor man alone to live as he wishes.”

Lawretta Henshaw-Ajadi, from Birmingham, said: “My cooking always smell [sic] tantalising. I love it like that. They can come in and partake at any time. That’s how my parents taught me how to cook. I can’t be eating sandwiches every time because of neighbours. They are free to cook theirs if the [sic] want. No one is holding them.

“No wonder there is so much stress around. People fuss about the smallest thing.”

She added: “People should learn to accommodate each other. If we must live among people, we have to adjust on a few things.”

Jodie Gray said: “What I find offensive is when my neighbour is cooking something in the morning and I have to smell how nice it is and then go back to eating my toast.”

But Debbie Williams said the smell of onions “made her feel sick”.

She said: “Well my old neighbours cooking smelt like stale sweaty onions and it wasn’t much fun when I cleaned all my house and came home to find my house smelling of onions, even with my windows closed the smell came in made me feel so sick.”

By Rhi Storer, Local Democracy Reporter

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