Two Enforcement Notices were issued on 15th March 2019 by Amber Valley Council (AVBC) requiring the park owner and residents to remove the lodges, etc, and restore the site to its former state. Those notices can be viewed in the Documents section of this web site.
The site and lodge owners appealed against the notices. The Planning Inspectorate (PI) has decided that the case should be the subject of a public inquiry, the date and location of which is yet to be announced. However, the Inspectorate has appointed a Case Officer, Madeline Fox, and the two appeal procedures have formally begun.
AVBC has issued letters to “interested parties”, i.e. persons and organisations that have submitted objections or comments about the redevelopment of the site since 2017. The letters, Enforcement Appeal letter EA/666 and Enforcement Appeal letter EA/667, are also posted in the Documents section of this site and should be read carefully. They give details of the appeals and some guidance as to how members of the public or organisations may make representation and participate in the process.
From our point of view it is very important that the PI should receive as many communications as possible supporting the council’s position. According to the ‘Guide to taking part in enforcement appeals and lawful development certificate appeals proceeding by an inquiry – England’, that can be done very simply by stating in a letter or email: “I support the LPA (Local Planning Authority – in this case AVBC) in issuing the enforcement notice” and explain whether it is for the same reasons as given by the LPA or, if not, explain your own reasons. The full guide document is available on-line(1) but we have made an extract of the most relevant parts and appended it below. Care must be taken to include reference numbers, site address, your details, etc, as instructed in the guide or your representation might not be considered.
Please note that any representation should be made to the PI, not AVBC and must reach there before the closing dates of 11th May 2020. Representation about both notices can be made in the same document or email but it must then make reference to all 19 Appeal Reference numbers listed in the two letters from AVBC and arrive before 11th May
We would like to thank you in advance for making representations to the PI and would also ask you to bring this to the attention of friends and contacts so they might express their opinions in support of the Enforcement Notices.
(1) See Links page, link number 6.
Extracts from the “Guide to taking part in enforcement appeals and lawful development certificate appeals proceeding by an inquiry – England”
4 What you can do
4.1 If you have already contacted the LPA about the site or building it may send us your representations but it does not have to do this. If you want the Inspector to take your views into account you should send us your representations about the appeal.
4.2 You must make sure that we receive your representations within 6 weeks of the starting date for the appeal. The LPA should have told you the deadline. There is a timetable for the inquiry procedure in the annexe to this guide.
4.3 The time limits for sending representations to us are important, and everyone taking part in an appeal must follow them. If you send us representations after the end of the time limits, we will not normally accept them. Instead we will return them to you. This means that the Inspector will not see them and so will not be able to take them into account.
4.4 When you send us your representations you should include: • your name and address; • the Planning Inspectorate appeal reference number (this will start APP/…); • the address of the appeal site; and, for an appeal against an enforcement notice, say either: • “I support the LPA in issuing the enforcement notice” and explain whether it is for the same reasons as given by the LPA or, if not, explain your own reasons;
4.5 You can make your representations online through GOV.UK using the search facility: https://www.gov.uk/appeal-planning-inspectorate or you can write to or email us. The LPA should have told you our Case Officer’s contact details. Our Case Officer is responsible for the administration of the appeal.
4.6 If you send us your representations in a letter, unless your handwriting is very clear it would help if you are able to have your representations typed. Please use black ink. If possible, please send us 3 copies and note that we do not acknowledge receipt.
4.7 We will copy your representations to the appellant and to the LPA where they will be available for anyone to see them.
4.8 However if we consider that your representations contain inflammatory, discriminatory or abusive comments, we will send them back to you before the Inspector or anyone else sees them. If you take out the inflammatory, discriminatory or abusive comments, you can send your representations back to us; but you must send them back before the time limit ends.
4.9 We do not accept anonymous representations, but you may ask for your name and address to be withheld. If you ask us to do this you should make sure that your representations do not include any other information which may identify you. We will copy your representations, with your name and address removed, to the parties, and they will be seen by the Inspector who may give them less weight as a result.
4.10 If you indicate that you do not want us to copy your representations to the appellant and the LPA, we will return them. They will not be seen by the Inspector and, therefore, will not be taken into account.
5 What is considered?
5.1 The Inspector can only take into account information and evidence that is relevant to the appeal. This could cover a wide range of issues, but those that apply are usually set out in the LPA’s reasons for issuing the enforcement notice
6.1 Please note that we are unable to return any documents or photographs.
6.3 For further information please see Annexe F of our “Procedural Guide: Enforcement appeals – England – 23 March 2016” https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/enforcement-appeals-procedural-guide
8.1 Local people are encouraged to take part in the inquiry process. Local knowledge and opinion can often be a valuable addition to the evidence given by the appellant and the LPA.
8.2 Before going to the inquiry, if you want to see what the appellant and the LPA have written, you should be able to see copies of the appeal documents at the LPA’s offices. The LPA’s and the appellant’s statements of case should be available 6 weeks after the appeal start date.
8.4 Depending on whether you support or oppose the appeal you may wish to consult the appellant or the LPA to find out what their position will be at the inquiry to help you decide whether your position can be satisfactorily represented by them.
8.5 Inquiries are open to members of the public, and although you do not have a legal right to speak, the Inspector will normally allow you to do so. If you want to speak at an inquiry, you need to think about what you want to say and how you want to say it. Some people prefer to make, or read out, a brief statement giving their views. If there are several people with the same views, it is a good idea for one person to speak on behalf of the others. A group of interested people may appoint one agent, solicitor, or barrister (who would be their “advocate”) – to represent them all.
11.1 Inquiries are open to journalists and the wider public, as well as interested people.
12.5 If you want to speak at the inquiry, it is important that you are there when it opens, because this is when the Inspector will: go through some routine matters; tell everyone about the timetable and the order that the proceedings will take; and ask if any interested people want to speak at the inquiry and will register their names.
12.6 Interested people may appear and give evidence at the Inspector’s discretion. An Inspector would rarely refuse a request to appear at the inquiry.
21.1 When made, the decision will be published on GOV.UK and can be viewed using the search facility: https://www.gov.uk/appeal-planning-inspectorate
This Post Has 2 Comments
The deadline for comments has now been extended to 11 May 2020.
The recommendation is to send comments either online using the appeals casework portal (https://acp.planninginspectorate.gov.uk/CaseSearch.aspx ) , or by email to email@example.com. If you are concerned about privacy, a separate text document, as an attachment which does not contain personal details, would be recommended. However if this is not possible then the PI can redact your email if requested to do so.
There will be delays with processing posted documents at this time due to the coronavirus pandemic. For updates and advice please see https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-planning-inspectorate-guidance
Some local residents have expressed reservations about their personal details being made known to CWPH and AVBC if they submit a representation. WACAG sought advice about this and can advise as follows:
1. Clearly, an Inspector will afford weight on evidence that is relevant and credible and less so to hearsay written in anonymity.
2. Thus it would be advisable to mention that you live in the vicinity, without being too specific, but are requesting the with-holding your details due to privacy concerns. Please do not mention that you are doing so due to any fear of intimidation as this could mean that the PI would have to return your representations due to them being potentially libellous.
3. Stick to matters of fact and reasonable constructive points you would like taken into consideration and the representations will be afforded the weight they deserve.