18 November 2015

Avalon rescued from a life of grime


Buildings in West Street are the latest to be spruced up thanks to the council’s planning enforcement team.

Located in the street that runs from the seafront to the Clock Tower, the Avalon housing development had deteriorated quickly, despite only being constructed around 10 years ago. Planning enforcement officers successfully negotiated with the property owners to clean the exterior, which has been transformed from a dirty grey to the original buff colour.

The work of the team has also seen the appearance of a number of properties significantly improved along London Road as well as the seafront. In the last financial year the officers formally investigated 54 properties in poor condition using powers under Section 215 of the Town and Country Planning Act. Most of these were improved by successfully negotiating with property owners, with only 16 having to be taken further to formal notice.

Councillor Julie Cattell, chair of the city’s planning committee, said: “This work is so important because it identifies properties that have fallen into disrepair which considerably affect the appearance of a place and the people who live there. The proactive work and negotiation by the enforcement team has achieved a significant result in a number of properties to the benefit of the city and its residents.”

The council’s officers first write to property owners in an attempt to negotiate positive works to a building or land. If this fails they can serve a Section 215 notice to require owners to take action and restore their properties or clean up land.