The cottage was thatched using wheat straw, traditionally laid in loose bundles without any regard for the alignment of the stems. The council pointed out that this gave the roof a "shaggy" appearance that would be lost under the appellant's proposal to use combed straw, in which the butts of all the stems would be aligned in the same direction and dressed into position to give a manicured appearance.
The inspector agreed that applying combed straw to the front of the cottage would result in an incongruous appearance because it would make the difference between the two styles of thatching highly apparent. This would undermine the character of the building and the conservation area, he concluded.
DCS No: 100039029; Inspector: Stephen Brown; Written representations.