Brighton Council wins backing in offices enforcement case

Posted on by John Cronin

Brighton and Hove City Council has received independent backing in a case against a local property company.

Pavilion ParadeThe council had served an enforcement notice on Baron Homes, instructing the company to convert a property back to serviced offices.

Baron Homes had converted the Grade II listed property at 8 Pavilion Parade (pictured) from offices to 7 residential apartments without having the necessary planning permission. After subsequently applying for retrospective permission, Baron Homes were turned down because it could not be shown that the existing office space had become redundant. The developers appealed against that decision and although this was also rejected the building was not converted back to offices.

An enforcement notice issued in March, 2010 was also appealed against and dismissed. An investigation by the planning inspector, Graham Self, has backed the action taken by the council and now Baron Homes are converting the building back to offices.

Councillor Lynda Hyde, chairman of the city’s planning committee, said: “It was never proved that office space is redundant in the area. Our policies are there to protect the long-term need for office space that will generate employment in the future. Indeed, the inspector noted that this is a prime location and there are other office premises in the same terrace”.

Several of the 4-storey buildings adjoining the property in question have been converted into office space, typically offering semi-serviced office suites with floor spaces of around 280 sq ft. Quoted rental prices inclusive of rates and service charges are £30 / sq ft per annum.

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