Planning enforcement

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We've recently had a loft conversion carried out, almost finished now.
At the stage where the dormer structure was built and tiled, somebody complained to planning and we had a visit from the council.

The case was closed and no further action was taken. My question is, is it possible for planning to revisit in the future and change their minds? Or a different enforcement officer to view things differently and possibly a different outcome for us?

Or can we put our minds at rest that the council is satisfied and that won't change?
 
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The case can be seen on the planning portal. All I can see is that the case is closed, the result is no further action, and the relevant dates.

I've had zero contact with the council as we weren on holiday when the visit was carried out.
 
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I have screenshots from the planning portal. Would it be common for a case to be reopened or a new case opened if there was a further complaint?
 
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My thinking is that surely we'd have a strong argument that if a potential breach had been highlighted as a result of this visit, it would be a lot easier/cheaper to make changes at that point than it would be now.
 
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If there was a further complaint on grounds sufficiently different from before, or if the Council was found to have erred in law then it's possible that a case could be opened. FWIW, I think this scenario is extremely unlikely. Save the screenshot, and just move on and don't worry about it.
 
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The issue is whether the work is lawful or not.

If it's not lawful, it can be enforced against unless enforcement itself becomes out of time.
 
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The rear face of the dormer sits about 8-10cm of the eaves. One of the stipulations of permitted development rules is, where practicable, the rear of the dormer shouldn't be any closer than 20cm to the eaves.

The eaves are flush with the wall so the only way the dormer could be moved back would be to install another steel.

On the enforcement case on the portal, the decision reason is listed as 'justification from officer'.

I guess my hope is that they've seen the work and judged it not to be practicable, or not worth following up.
 
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We've recently had a loft conversion carried out, almost finished now.
At the stage where the dormer structure was built and tiled, somebody complained to planning and we had a visit from the council.

The case was closed and no further action was taken. My question is, is it possible for planning to revisit in the future and change their minds? Or a different enforcement officer to view things differently and possibly a different outcome for us?

Or can we put our minds at rest that the council is satisfied and that won't change?
No, the Council can re open the case any time it likes, it can re open it even if it says you have not breached planning rules and then decides you have. You need to identify what if anything the breach is e.g. planning control or building regs.

Blup
 
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Assuming worst case scenario and we're told to move the dormer back by 10-15cm. What would be a ballpark cost for moving the wall back for a 6m wide dormer, 10k, 20k, 30k. The entire job has cost 50k.
 
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If there is actually a formal decision reason given I think the principle of functus officio will apply. That is once a decision has been made by someone with the authority to make that decision it cannot be simply revisited. There may be mechanisms to unwind a decision but I suspect that would then involve compensation.
 
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You need to bear in mind that enforcement is entirely at the discretion of the council; no complainant can demand that the council take legal action. Technically, your roof enlargement is not permitted development as it is too near the edge of the tiles/slates, but that does not mean that the council must - or are minded to - take action over it.

There is official government guidance issued to LPAs concerning enforement, which states that 'enforcement may not be appropriate for a minor or technical breach where no harm has occurred' Maybe the enforcement officer looked up, saw there was at least still a gutter, and felt it was not worth following up. If it's been seen and logged as 'case closed' I'd just forget about it - its unlikely that they will take action at this stage.

It calls into question the competence of your builder; were they 'loft conversion specialists'?
 
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They are indeed a loft conversion specialist. If we had our time again we'd do things differently. In my defence, this is the first time we've had building work done and chose what we thought was the best option for us.
They were well aware of the 40/50m³ extra space limitation, so I'd be very surprised if they didn't know about the required distance from eaves.

The planning officer not only looked up, but were inside the dormer structure. So they were able to get a good look close up.

We're days away from completion, so we're not making any changes at this stage unless we're forced to. I'd just like to be able to set my mind at rest and not have to worry about this for the next 4 years, or 10 years if legislation changes.
 
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You mention an "enforcement case on the portal", whatever that is.

I'm confused.
And you seem to be confused too as to what enforcement is.

Has the work been investigated and an outcome of that investigation given? Ie there is no progression to enforcement?
Or is the non compliant work being enforced?
 

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