Owners must tear down home built 4m ‘adrift’

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A COUPLE have been ordered to demolish their newly built home in Mendlesham - because it was built just four metres away from the approved site.

Owners Chris and Frances Huntingford lodged an appeal against an enforcement notice from Mid Suffolk District Council (MSDC) which ordered them to tear down their house after differences were spotted between the approved building designs and the actual construction.

But on Tuesday the council stated that the appeal had been rejected and that the house and its foundations must now be demolished by February 16, 2013.

John Peecock, a planning consultant representing the Huntingfords, said the couple were devastated by the decision.

He said: “The previous owner of the property applied for outline planning permission for a two-storey house and it was approved by Mid Suffolk District Council.

“My clients then bought the site with this outline permission, or so they thought.

“They later applied for detailed planning permission and this was also approved.

“Then two years ago the council got a complaint about the size of the chimney and my clients brought me in as a consultant.

“I did a thorough inspection of the site and noticed the discrepency - the house was about four metres adrift.

“Nobody from the council had picked up on it at all.

“We went to the council and told them of the issue.

“From there the council have been on the anti side from day one. I have never heard of anything like it.

“A huge amount of money has gone into the house and the ordeal has caused great stress for Mr and Mrs Huntingford.”

Ben Elvin, Planning Enforcement Manager for MSDC said: “This case highlights the importance of developers ensuring that the works they carry out comply with their approved plans, and any conditions on their planning permission, due to the significant personal and financial consequences which may result for those involved in unlawful work.”

The Huntingfords are considering their position.