TWO sisters have been fined £20,000 for failing to comply with a building Enforcement Notice issued by Stratford District Council.
Fiona Wingrove and Sara Thomas of Fox Farm, Bascote, Southam, were fined £10,000 each when they appeared before magistrates in Nuneaton. The council was awarded £1,782 costs.
The Enforcement Notice was issued in June 2012 and required the sisters to stop using a building at Fox Farm for residential purposes and to then demolish the building.
But the notice was not carried out and legal challenges were made.
Wingrove had been prosecuted in 2010 for not complying with the requirements of a separate Planning Contravention Notice in relation to the same site.
Coun Dave Riches, ward member for Long Itchington and Stockton, said: “This is an important case that gives local people confidence that when there are breaches in planning regulations that the district council will act on their behalf when it is right to do so.
“I congratulate the enforcement team on their rigorous and tenacious approach to this long drawn out issue.”
Coun Peter Richards, chairman of council’s regulatory committee, hoped the council’s action would act as a warning.
He said: “This case clearly demonstrates the commitment Stratford District Council has to enforcement and should act as a deterrent to those developers and members of the public who may consider an attempt to circumvent the planning system and not comply with planning law.”
* Stratford District Council also successfully prosecuted a man for failing to comply with a Listed Building Enforcement Notice.
Stanley Holland of Nut Tree Barn, Alderminster was issued with the notice in May last year to remove a number of solar panels put on a roof without permission.
Holland pleaded guilty at Nuneaton Magistrates Court and was £400 and the district council was awarded £1,640 costs.
The solar panels were removed and the roof was made good shortly before the case was heard.
Coun Phillip Seccombe, ward member for Ettington, said: “I have always put the case for protecting our heritage assets in the district and am pleased that the council has pursued this case.”
Regulatory committee chair Coun Richards added the council was committed to protecting Listed Buildings and preserving the district’s heritage.