A homeowner’s bid to double the number of bedrooms at his property so family members from England could visit was thrown out because of "speculation" by neighbours he was planning to rent out his house, he has claimed.

Mujahid Nazir’s plans to extend his house in Tranent sparked objections from neighbours and was rejected by East Lothian Councillors after it was claimed it could potentially turn a family home into a house of multiple occupancy (HMO).

But in a statement to Scottish Ministers, Mr Nazir said the plans to turn the three-bedroom house on Sanderson's Grove into a six-bedroom home was so his family could visit.

He said: “[The] actual reason to extend my house is that I have three sisters and one brother who all live in England and each family has 5‐6 members so when they visit we don’t have space to accommodate them and for this reason they hesitate to visit us."

And he said any concern about the house being turned into an HMO was “speculation and not facts”.

At a meeting of the council’s planning committee in March, planning permission for the extension was rejected after neighbours spoke about their concerns.

As well as telling the committee the extension would block out the sun from a neighbouring sunroom, neighbours raised concern over the size of the extension and its possible use as an HMO was put forward.

Councillor Kenny McLeod, local ward member, asked if a condition could be attached barring it from being used as an HMO but was advised against it.

The committee unanimously voted to refuse planning permission for the two-storey extension, ruling it was overdevelopment, despite planning officers recommending it for approval.

Mr Nazir has now appealed to Scottish Ministers to overturn the decision.

He said: “Our applications was prepared as per council guidelines and was recommended for approval from the planning officer.

“There are many examples in the area of similar extensions being approved and reasons for refusal of my application are all speculation and not facts.”

The appeal is ongoing.