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Atkinson Angers Neighbours Over Property Plans

17 July 2010 7:06 AM, PDT | WENN | See recent WENN news »

British funnyman Rowan Atkinson has angered local residents near his home in England over plans to transform the traditional property into a modern building.

The Mr Bean star has submitted a planning application to demolish his country mansion in Oxfordshire and replace it with a $7.5 million (£5 million) modern "reinvention".

Atkinson, who bought the home in 2006, insists the planned plaster and glass design will not be "weird or futuristic" but would be "simple, graceful and elegant", adding: "It would be a terrible shame if people felt that there was no place in the countryside for modern design."

The description in the planning application reads, "The design is a reinvention of the traditional country house. The home will add to our architectural heritage rather than parody it."

But the proposals have been met with fury from the actor's neighbours, with one resident, Ben Yates, telling Britain's The Sun, "It will look like an ugly space-age petrol station. If he gets planning permission it will just go to show that he has got more money than sense."

The Chilterns Conservation Board has also described the plan as "completely inappropriate".

A decision over the proposal will be made by officials at South Oxfordshire District Council in September. »

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