A CONTROVERSIAL yoga studio which residents said will 'shatter' their peaceful street along the River Thames will be built.

A single storey building in East Street, first built in 1926, will be demolished and the two-storey building put up in its place.

The current building was used as a dairy, a boiler room for a house next door and then an artist's studio.

One resident said it would ‘change the nature of [East Street] forever’, even if people using the studio arrived by bike.

“Bicycles would inevitably end up on the stretch of grass,” they added.

City council planning officers would normally decide applications like the yoga studio alone. But it was discussed by councillors after four of their colleagues said they wanted it decided at the committee.

The city Labour councillors said there was ‘massive concern’ around East Street about the potential impact of the studio.

Ultimately, seven city councillors voted in favour of the application, while one, Labour’s Dan Iley-Williamson, voted against.

He said the application was 'very out of keeping with the street' and that it was 'not appropriate' in the city's Osney Town Conservation Area.

One of those to vote in favour, Alex Hollingsworth, had asked for the application to go to the West Area planning committee over the significant concern.

But he said his worries over the use of the building had been allayed.

Mike Gotch, a Liberal Democrat councillor, said the 'shabby little shed' should be replaced by the 'very distinguished' new building. He said the new development will be 'an asset' to Osney Island.

Colin Cook, the chairman of the committee, said: “Personally I don’t like the look of it but my personal tastes are not what I wish to impose on others.”

East Street resident Vernon Orr, whose house lies next door to the current garage, said he disliked the ‘copper-clad’ unit and worried about its potential impact.

He said he was ‘baffled’ over why the council told him his house had to have tiles from one of just two mines in Wales when it was recently repaired but that it would allow the new studio.

Planning officers said the homes had to be preserved in that manner because they are part of the conservation area – but the garage building is not included in those rules.

More than 30 objections were submitted to the city council, with 24 sent to it in favour.

Legal advice was presented to the council over the application. It claimed there might be problems with the conservation area’s designation if the garage was demolished. But the authority said the argument was ‘not persuasive’.