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Listed building owner fined for a breach of an amenity notice

The Lady in Grey, Wilne Lane, Shardlow The Lady in Grey, Wilne Lane, Shardlow

South Derbyshire District Council have prosecuted a landowner who pleaded guilty at Derby Magistrates Court on 28 November 2023 for failing to comply with a S215 notice that was issued requiring proper maintenance of the land.

S215 notices can be issued by a local authority where they consider that the condition of land and buildings is having a detrimental effect on the amenity of the area. It is an offence to fail to comply with a S215 notice.

Keiron Armstrong, 66 of Newstead Abbey Park, Nottingham was issued with a S215 notice by South Derbyshire District Council following several complaints that the lack of maintenance of the building and grounds of The Lady in Grey, a Grade II Listed Building located in the Shardlow Conservation Area, was having a detrimental effect on the visual amenity of the area.

Mr Armstrong failed to comply with the requirements of the notice which prescribed twenty-four separate actions to remediate the dilapidated exterior of the listed building and the grounds. This led to the Planning Enforcement Team working in collaboration with the Council’s Legal Team to prosecute the case.

Mr Armstrong was fined £900 (the maximum is £1,000 with a 10% reduction for a late guilty plea), ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £90 and pay the Council’s full costs of the prosecution of £1,450.

Commenting on the prosecution, Councillor Robert Pearson, Leader of South Derbyshire District Council said: “It is extremely disappointing that Mr Armstrong failed to comply with the terms of the S215 notice, allowing a heritage asset within South Deryshire to become a run-down eyesore. The level of fine issued indicates the severity with which the Magistrates viewed this case.

“Planning rules are in place for a good reason and the Council takes allegations of breaches very seriously. I hope that this prosecution sends a clear message that breaches of planning control and subsequent failure to comply with formal notices will not be tolerated and legal action will be taken where necessary. The success of this case demonstrates the positive working relationship between the Council’s Planning Enforcement and Legal Teams.”

4 December 2023

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