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A brick too far for council

17/05/2018

Developers and housebuilders have been warned to ensure they comply with planning permission after a family faces having to tear down their new property because it has been built too high. 

Mark Turner, from our Town and Country Planning team, said the case of the Naseem family from Lightwood in Staffordshire was a “stark reminder” to follow planning permission to the letter.

The family of seven have only recently moved into their home, which was originally given planning approval in 2016, but now face a legal battle with Stoke on Trent City Council if they want to stay put.

Mark explained: “Although the general design, layout and form of the constructed house accord with the planning permission, the house has been built 1.1m higher at the eaves and 2m higher at the roof ridge than what was approved under the planning permission. 

“Other differences include a reduced roof pitch, the repositioning of dormers within the front roof slope and the addition of a door to the east elevation. Neighbours have complained that the house has caused a loss of privacy, overshadowing, and wasn’t in keeping with the surrounding two storey houses.”

The council’s Planning Committee refused retrospective planning permission at a meeting on May 9 despite hearing it would cost £200,000 to take the roof off.

Mark added: “Mr Naseem can lodge an appeal against that refusal to the Planning Inspectorate but the council may well take enforcement action to potentially require the house to be demolished.

“This case serves as a stark reminder for developers and housebuilders to follow permission to the letter and that if you want an alternative design or specification then formal approval of the council must be sought before proceeding. Even if errors happen unintentionally, it can be a very costly mistake to make.”

Mark specialises in a variety of matters including planning applications, appeals, hearings and inquiries, matters involving heritage assets, compulsory purchase matters and judicial reviews, and section 106 agreements. 

For further advice, please contact him on 01952 208412 or m.turner@fbcmb.co.uk.

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