FENLAND: Council loses window appeal but father and daughter still angry over Conservative Club

By ADAM LAZZARI A FATHER and daughter won a battle to keep white UPVC frames for windows and an office door but claim they were treated differently to a local Conservative Club. Sarah Easton helped her father Ralph Hix to overturn an enforcement order b

By ADAM LAZZARI

A FATHER and daughter won a battle to keep white UPVC frames for windows and an office door but claim they were treated differently to a local Conservative Club.

Sarah Easton helped her father Ralph Hix to overturn an enforcement order by Fenland Council but says similar windows were installed at a Conservative Club without planning permission.

Legal action was taken against Ralph Hix, 70, after he installed UPVC frames in a conservation area at St Mary's Street, Whittlesey.

The Government Planning Inspectorate has now quashed the enforcement and allowed Mr Hix and his daughter Sarah, 42, to retain the window frames providing they are repositioned.

But the couple are furious that they had to go through this costly process when the Conservative Club on Whitmore Street installed UPVC window frames without planning permission.

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Mrs Easton said: "This appeal has cost something like �3,000 and this condition of having to move the frames back is utterly ridiculous. Replacing the frames all together could have cost dad between �5,000 and �6,000 so I guess this is a victory of sorts. But I'm furious about the whole thing."

However Martin Curtis, a Whittlesey councillor and planning committee chairman, said the two issues were separate.

"The Conservative Club replaced its windows following advice and agreement from Fenland District Council and used windows which are clearly identical," he said. "The replacement windows and door at the St Mary's Street office had no permission and we believed it was not in keeping with the surrounding buildings."

He was adamant everything with the Conservative Club was "above board because we do have to treat everyone the same".

A council spokesman said they had tried negotiating the alterations with Mr Hix who declined and so it went to appeal.

"If Mr Hix felt we had been unreasonable he was given the opportunity to put forward his case for compensation to the planning inspector," he said.

"He chose not to do so.

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