Hampshire man fined £1,000 after refusing to pull down his wall

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A MAN has been ordered to pay £1,700 in fines and costs after refusing to pull down a wall he wasn’t allowed to build.

David Young, 53, had submitted a retrospective planning application for the front wall and gates at S&D Nurseries in Dradfield Lane, Soberton, in November 2009.

But councillors rejected it, describing the electric gates and brick walls with wrought iron decorations as urban in design and incongruous, as the property is in the Forest of Bere lowlands landscape character area.

Young appealed the decision, but this was dismissed in August 2010 by a government inspector.

Winchester City Council then issued an enforcement notice in October that year, ordering that Young demolish the walls and gates but he failed to do so immediately.

He was taken to Fareham Magistrates’ Court where he pleaded guilty.

Magistrates fined him £1,000 and ordered him to pay £755.40 costs as well as a £15 victim surcharge, which must be paid by December 22.

The court heard how the walls and gates had been partly demolished before the hearing but the bench ordered Young to fully comply with the notice.

Cllr Rob Humby, who is in charge of planning matters for Winchester council, said, ‘This case is reminder to all residents of the district of the consequences of undertaking works without planning permission.

‘It has been an expensive lesson for Mr Young who was given plenty of opportunity to comply with the notice but choose to ignore it’

‘OUT OF PLACE’

IN his report, government inspector Richard Thomas described the wall and gates as having a ‘suburban character’ which ‘appears completely out of place in this rural setting, where roadsides are predominantly flanked by hedges or post and rail fences’.

Mr Thomas added: ‘My attention was drawn to a number of other broadly similar entrances, including that immediately opposite the appeal site.

‘However, none of the examples appeared to be authorised and, notwithstanding the fact that the council may not have successfully exercised its enforcement powers, they do not set a precedent for allowing similar harmful development.’

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