A BLOCK of flats that was built less than a metre wider than originally planned has been demolished this week.
The Parade, located behind the shops off Brecon Road in Woodley, were constructed in 2011, but landlord Khadim Hussain was penalised after inspections found it was 750mm too wide.
The 63-year-old was handed a planning enforcement notice requiring demolition by Wokingham Borough Council, yet decided not to bring down the building.
Borough planning officer Marcia Head said: “This may not sound much, but the council felt that the approved building was probably the maximum that could be accommodated on the site and building it slightly wider has meant a substantial increase in the bulk of the building – as the increase in width is over several storeys – which has had an adverse impact on the amenities of neighbours.”
In October 2013, Mr Hussain pleaded guilty to failing to comply with the enforcement notice, and was fined £12,500 before being found guilty of failing to comply again at Reading Magistrates’ Court in September last year.
Mr Hussain was forced to evict four families from the building last summer, and he had appealed against the second enforcement notice.
In her report rejecting this appeal from September 2014, Inspector Hayley Butler found the building was too close to neighbouring properties. She said: “While I have not found harm to the living conditions of occupiers of the flats, I have found harm in terms of the living conditions of occupiers of neighbouring properties with respect to loss of outlook.”