EDDC to help unauthorised Greendale businesses to relocate

Owl says: Here is EDDC’s version of the Greendale High Court decision.

With hindsight, EDDC might have been better served by not allowing the unauthorised businesses on to the site in the first place. And if the owners allowed businesses on an unauthorised site, maybe the owners and the businesses should be paying for specialists when those businesses have to move this time, not availing themselves of a free service from EDDC – especially as the rest of us are paying more and more for OUR EDDC services.


21 February 2018
Enforcement action taken to remove unauthorised development at Greendale Business Park
Council will work with park owners to find alternative locations for businesses

East Devon District Council has successfully fought a planning appeal by Greendale Business Park against an enforcement notice requiring the park owners to remove an unauthorised extension.

The business park has been extended into the countryside after four fenced compounds were created, concreted over and were used variously for the storage of mobile homes, shipping containers, portakabins and, in the case of one of the compounds, had two permanent buildings on it.

Following the latest High Court hearing, it now means that the owners of Greendale Business Park, FWS Carter and Sons, must comply with the enforcement notice, remove the extension and return the land to countryside within six months of the court’s decision.

Councillor Mike Howe, chairman of the district council’s development management committee, said that the council will work with the park owners to find alternative locations for businesses on the unauthorised site affected by the enforcement notice.

“This case demonstrates that we take unauthorised development very seriously and as a local authority are charged with using our enforcement powers to ensure that development carried out without planning permission is removed.

“We will work hard with the site owners to find alternative locations for the businesses currently operating from this unauthorised area.

“We’re pleased that the courts have now stopped this appeal from proceeding any further and the enforcement notice to get these works removed has now taken effect.”

The works were all carried out without planning permission and a subsequent planning application was refused due to the harm that the extension caused to the countryside and the visual amenity of the area.

Following the refusal of planning permission, the council served an enforcement notice on the owners requiring the uses to cease and the land returned to its former condition including the removal of temporary and permanent buildings, fencing and hard surfacing.

Although the owners appealed against the enforcement notice, a planning inspector ruled in favour of the council and directed the owners to stop using the land in the way it was and return it to its former condition within six months.

The owners subsequently appealed against the decision in the High Court arguing that the planning inspector had made an error in law by concluding that the East Devon Local Plan specifically covered the issue of development at Greendale Business Park.

In responding, the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government argued that FWS Carter and Sons had misinterpreted the Local Plan and that their interpretation was “patently wrong”. Ultimately, the court did not grant the owners a further opportunity to proceed with an appeal and they will have to pay all costs arising from the case.”

5 thoughts on “EDDC to help unauthorised Greendale businesses to relocate

  1. Mike – I think we are all clear that your offer was intended to help the tenants even if your quote says you would do it by “working with the site owners”. This definitely gives the impression that your help would be beneficial to Greendale by helping them “find alternative locations for the businesses currently operating from this unauthorised area”.

    My point, however, is that you need to be utterly clear that you are not going to provide any support to Greendale even indirectly.


    • Paul I will not say never as I don’t know what the future will hold, but I will be as clear as I can, this is Greendales Mess they need to sort it, if any of the resident businesses need help in getting planning permission or understanding if the sites they intend to move to need permission, I would expect our planning team to be as helpful as posable in making sure that it is done correctly for the future, we will not help rectify the current situation that Is for the site to do. This processes is not different to any enquiry our planning team would get. They only have 6 months to get it back to the green fields. I hope that helps.


  2. Mike – nice to see that you read the Owl’s reports of shenanigans at EDDC.

    I do understand your desire to help the tenants at Greendale, who are definitely victims in this shambles.

    Whilst I can also have some compassion for the tenant businesses, we need to recognise that in law individuals have the protection of consumer rights laws but businesses are expected to undertake appropriate due diligence. If EDDC helps the tenants in any way that reduces the consequences for Greendale, this will give entirely the wrong impression that having enforced the planning laws, EDDC is now wanting to help out the Carter family with whom the Conservative group is alleged to have close ties.

    The tenants will undoubtedly have formal leases with Greendale the underlying basis of which is that Greendale is actually legally entitled to issue the lease. So it seems to me that the tenants have a strong legal case against Greendale, and that immediate legal action should be their first step. Given the history it is entirely possible that Greendale will be liable for all contingent costs incurred by tenants (including costs of relocation, any differences in rent with wherever they move to, and even loss of profits) so perhaps the best way that EDDC can help is to help them form a joint legal action and make public as much evidence as possible that would help them with this legal case.

    Having lost large sums of money already by fighting this case to the high court, and with it clear that they had acted illegally in creating the compounds, hopefully Greendale will now be wary of incurring more legal costs and be willing to settle fast in order not to have to e.g. pay out compensation for businesses going bust.


    • Paul It was the accusation of free help, we have made no promises of free help, And I admit that my Quote was not quite correct in hindsight, instead of helping Greendale, It should have said the affected business, if they need it.


  3. I do have to ask what free service, no where in this press release does it mention a free service. EDDC will work to make sure any new permissions are expedited in as timely way as possible to allow the companies to move to new locations, so protecting the employment and livelyhoods of the innocent employees. As they only have 6 months to return the site to fields.


Comments are closed.