DISTRICT planning chiefs are set to rule on revised plans to build beach huts beneath a Swanage hotel.

Owners of the Pines Hotel, Burlington Road, initially wanted to build 45 beach huts, across four tiers, on the cliff side overlooking Swanage Bay.

But Purbeck District Council's (PDC) planning committee turned down the scheme, last year, citing the scale of the project as a major concern.

Now new plans for 40 beach huts on just three tiers have been resubmitted. And the council planning department is recommending committee members nod through the application this time around.

However, some local residents - and the nearby Ballard Estate Company - are still voicing opposition.

In his official response to the revised plans, Roger Livingstone, speaking on behalf of the Ballard Estate Company, said: "We consider that the landscape and visual impacts of the scheme remain serious and unacceptable.

"A highly intrusive man-made structure would be created along the cliff face above the beach, adversely affecting the character and amenity of this area which includes part of the Dorset Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) and the setting of the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site."

Meanwhile, Burlington Road resident Phillip Collins, who is also opposed to the scheme, raised concerns about extra parking generated by the huts.

Of the ten neighbour responses received by planning officers, just two were in support of the beach hut plans.

Burlington Road resident Mark Anderson, one of those supporters, said he had no objection, "as long as the rest of the promenade is cleared of debris, so they can be easily accessed from this direction for disabled visitors."

Revised plans prepared by Vail Williams and HGP Architects on behalf of hotel owners Brian and John Puddepha are proposing 40 beach huts on three tiers, with seven huts and a sun terrace on the top level, 15 huts and two toilet/shower blocks on the middle level and 18 huts on the ground level.

They would be accessible via the beachfront and a staircase leading from the hotel.

In his report to committee members, PDC planning case officer Peter Walters concluded: "The previous application was refused due to its excessive vertical scale. The applicant has addressed this matter by means of removing the fourth tier from the southern part of the development and the third tier from the northern part."

PDC's planning committee will rule on the proposals at Westport House, Worgret Road, on March 28.