A NEW set of changes to a home once owned by the estranged wife of Graham Greene could ruin its historical value and damage the surrounding area, neighbours have warned.

The owners of Grove House in Iffley Turn want to build a 6.9m tall garage, car port and new driveway at the property where Vivien Greene lived and which Lewis Carroll once visited.

It comes after their application to demolish the Rotunda – a building alongside Grove House which housed Mrs Greene's huge dolls' house collection – was withdrawn earlier this year.

Now neighbours, as well as residents' group Friends of Iffley Village, have voiced their opposition to the new plans, which would also see new gates installed, a wall in the garden rebuilt and changes to internal partition walls.

Author Lucien Senna, who also lives in Iffley Turn, said she was disappointed a new application had been made.

She said: "It is once again disturbing something which should be preserved.

"It has historical importance and there are not that many buildings like that.

"Graham Greene was one of the most important writers of the last century.

"I completely object to it being modernised in any way, it should be preserved for its historic value."

Architects Bergman Guedes Stretton said in a planning statement that the owners of the house wanted to improve the property and make it "a hospitable home" for children, adults and grandparents.

The company said the larger three-car garage would be built in a "discrete" location along the west boundary of the garden whilst the car port, to be used by the Rotunda, would be on the site of an old garage which has since been demolished.

Friends of Iffley Village said it was concerned by the application.

In a letter to Oxford City Council's planning department the group said: "The driveway will bisect the north sector of the garden and destroy soil that has been cultivated for centuries.

"Garages are ground-level shelters for cars for which an upper storey with four large windows is obviously unnecessary.

"Converting such a large structure into [a] separate home would be tempting for future owners, if not now."

The group also said it was concerned that the garage could have motion-detecting lights attached which could disrupt wildlife.

Grove House was built between 1780 and 1823 and the Rotunda was added in the 1960s by Mrs Greene, whose husband wrote books including Brighton Rock and The Third Man.

Mrs Greene, who died in 2003 and the age of 98, began collecting dolls' houses in 1942 and by the mid-1990s the Rotunda housed 41, which were later sold at auction.

Deborah Burrows, who lives in nearby Church Way, also objected to the application for the three-car garage.

She said: "The height, depth and width of the proposals is excessive and will impact adversely upon the character of the area and on the views of local residents."