An appeal to build nine homes on the site of the now demolished Rose Cottage has been dismissed.

Beliche Comercio Internacional Limited appealed to the secretary of state for housing after Merton Council failed to make a decision regarding the 200-year-old south Wimbledon building in the allotted timeframe.

Campaigners had previously called on the council to reject the developer’s application to demolish Rose Cottage.

But despite nearly 1000 people signing a petition backing the objection, the demolition went ahead anyway.

But many of those living in the Battles, as the estate around the site is known, continued to object as they felt the buildings proposed to replace Rose Cottage were inappropriate.

Chairman of the Battles Area Residents Association and one of the campaigners, Philip Whiteside said the rejection of the plans was a "partial victory" to the campaigners.

“It’s very satisfying that the inspectorate agrees with many people in the Battles that this development was unsuitable for the site," he said.

“What is also satisfying is that the planning inspector agreed with many of the points residents had made.

“It is a terrible shame that Rose Cottage could not be saved as it could have been retained with the addition of extra housing to make the good quality homes the area needs.

“But, what this decision shows is that authorities can make the right decision when they listen to people who say they don’t want the wrong kind of development in their neighbourhood.

“Battles Area Residents Association was only one of a number of interested parties who objected, but we would like to thank everyone who joined in the campaign for more appropriate development on the site.”

Among the main concerns raised when rejecting the application were that the nine homes would be harmful to the character and appearance of the area and that it would result in an increase in parking stress and consequent illegal or unsafe parking.

“The proposal would not be in accordance with the development plan and the considerable resultant harm would not be outweighed by other material considerations," the inspector wrote.

"For the reasons set out above, and having regard to all other matters raised, I conclude that the appeal should be dismissed.”