Two weeks ago I blogged about a planning issue in Blenheim Park ward, surrounding a large storage container in front of a house in Harridge Road. The container had no planning permission, and was something of an eyesore in the local area.
So I wrote to the council, enquiring about the possibility of a Planning Enforcement Order to remove the offending installation, and requesting that such a solution be looked into. Earlier in the week I received this response:
Dear Mr Dent
Thank you for your recent email in this matter.
It is correct that the fact the Council owns this property does not necessarily preclude the service of an Enforcement Notice under Section 172 of the Town & Country Planning Act 1990 (as amended). Under the relevant legislation, Notices would have to be served on all those having an interest in the land i.e. the tenant and any other occupiers, South Essex Homes and the Borough Council itself. In order to serve such a Notice, authorisation would first need to be obtained from the Council’s Development Control Committee.
However, SEH have agreed to deal with the matter as it is a Council tenant who is responsible for the breach of planning control and this is deemed the most appropriate route to tackle the issue.
I trust this information clarifies the position.
Neil Auger – Planning Enforcement Officer – Southend-on-Sea Borough Council
A collaborative solution is certainly a preferable one, provided it is effective. I hope that South Essex Homes will manage to resolve the issue quickly and without further ill-feeling — but I do note that when I was out campaigning in Blenheim Park at the weekend, the storage container was still in place.
I will be keeping an eye on the situation.