Wednesday 12 August 2015

11 and 13 Marine Gardens

This week I notified Thanet Council's Planning Enforcement department regarding a couple of sites along the seafront at Marine Gardens that are really dragging the area down. Specifically, 11 Marine Gardens and Clock Tower News at 13 Marine Gardens.

Wouldn't it be great for the whole of the seafront to be improved now Dreamland is open?

11 Marine Gardens

Grade II Listed Georgian building that had until a few years ago stood empty for years with a commercial restaurant space at ground level. Sadly, it was granted permission to be converted into flats, including at the ground floor and basement levels. The resulting flat at ground floor on this busy road now has curtains pulled across the doors at all the time and have resulted in the loss of what would now be a viable commercial space. 

There is a very tiny window at ground floor level for the basement flat with a large Euro Bin that stands immediately in front of it. This surely isn't a good idea in front of a basement flat window.
This is adjacent to the busy seafront narrow stretch of pavement and the bin is often overflowing.

The reply I got from Planning Enforcement today stated:

"I have checked the planning history and can advise the reference number application ( listed building ) you provided is for a withdrawn application The associated planning application was refused. The last approved planning application for a conversion to flats , does not have any conditions relating to bin storage. There is therefore , nothing I can enforce. I would respectfully suggest , you contact the Councils waste area for assistance."

Surely, one avenue the Council could pursue is a Section 215 Notice? This is the legislation that authorities can utilise to deal with general eye sore problems. Guidance on Section 215 Notices.

"SCOPE OF POWERSection 215 can be used  effectively on large vacant industrial sites, town centre  street frontages, rural sites, derelict buildings, and semi-complete development as well as the more typical rundown residential properties and overgrown gardens.

The scope of works that can be required in s215 notices is wide and includes planting, clearance, tidying, enclosure, demolition, re-building, external repairs and repainting."

Clocktower News - 13 Marine Gardens

An empty ground floor shop in a Grade II Listed Georgian building situated at a busy seafront location. The frontage is very run down with lights hanging off. The tiled area in front of the shop is in poor condition and used by the public to walk on around the corner, yet it's privately owned. 

Planning Enforcement today stated:

"I have taken a look at the photo you have provided and am of the opinion , that it does not warrant any action yet , under the planning act."
 Again, I would have thought that a Section 215 Notice would be applicable here.