Council will work with park owners to find alternative locations for businesses
East Devon District Council has successfully fought a planning appeal by Greendale Business Park against an enforcement notice requiring the park owners to remove an unauthorised extension.
The business park has been extended into the countryside after four fenced compounds were created, concreted over and were used variously for the storage of mobile homes, shipping containers, portakabins and, in the case of one of the compounds, had two permanent buildings on it.
Following the latest High Court hearing, it now means that the owners of Greendale Business Park, FWS Carter and Sons, must comply with the enforcement notice, remove the extension and return the land to countryside within six months of the court’s decision.
Councillor Mike Howe, chairman of the district council’s development management committee, said that the council will work with the park owners to find alternative locations for businesses on the unauthorised site affected by the enforcement notice.
This case demonstrates that we take unauthorised development very seriously and as a local authority are charged with using our enforcement powers to ensure that development carried out without planning permission is removed.
We will work hard with the site owners to find alternative locations for the businesses currently operating from this unauthorised area.
We’re pleased that the courts have now stopped this appeal from proceeding any further and the enforcement notice to get these works removed has now taken effect.
The works were all carried out without planning permission and a subsequent planning application was refused due to the harm that the extension caused to the countryside and the visual amenity of the area.
Following the refusal of planning permission, the council served an enforcement notice on the owners requiring the uses to cease and the land returned to its former condition including the removal of temporary and permanent buildings, fencing and hard surfacing. Although the owners appealed against the enforcement notice, a planning inspector ruled in favour of the council and directed the owners to stop using the land in the way it was and return it to its former condition within six months.
The owners subsequently appealed against the decision in the High Court arguing that the planning inspector had made an error in law by concluding that the East Devon Local Plan specifically covered the issue of development at Greendale Business Park.
In responding, the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government argued that FWS Carter and Sons had misinterpreted the Local Plan and that their interpretation was “patently wrong”. Ultimately, the court did not grant the owners a further opportunity to proceed with an appeal and they will have to pay all costs arising from the case.