Council Planners To Enforce The Repair Of Gutted Listed Building

Developer must put back all the fixtures and fittings they have removed

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The council's planning department has issued a listed building enforcement notice requiring the developers to from the Montague Arms public house in Medfield Street.

Failure to comply with the notice would render the developers liable to prosecution. If a prosecution was mounted and the case heard at the crown court the company could face unlimited fines and its directors could face prison terms.

The Montague Arms is one of the borough's oldest buildings, with parts of it dating back to the 17th Century. It is a Grade II Listed building.

In November last year, the town hall was alerted that unauthorised building works were being carried out there by developers Carrington Sears Ltd. The company had gutted the interior of the building in preparation for its conversion into flats.

However none of these works were lawful. The council had not received any planning application nor any application for listed building consent. No permissions had been granted allowing such works to take place. It is a criminal offence to undertake any works on a listed building without listed building consent.

The council straight away obtained a High Court injunction ordering the Bethnal Green based company to cease all works immediately. Now the enforcement notice requires them to reinstate all the fixtures they've taken out.

These include putting back all the original doors, door casings, walls, staircase, panelling and timber beam cladding. They must also repair and reinstate the external fascia boards on the front of the pub, as well as the former bar on the ground floor, along with all its associated joinery and cupboards.

Council leader Edward Lister said: "Carrington Sears will now be required to restore this listed building back to the way they found it. All the original fixtures and fittings they've torn out will have to be put back. The Montague Arms is a very important historic building that has been a central focal point in Roehampton for centuries. It is totally unacceptable for a developer to start interfering with a listed building in this way without any kind of consent or permission."

The enforcement notice has been issued under Section 38 of the Planning (Listed Buildings & Conservations Areas) Act 1990 and gives Carrington Sears Ltd a deadline of March 18, 2009 to start remedial works. These works must then be completed within four months.

February 13, 2009