There hasn’t been a home on Mallerstang site for 50 years

Date: Friday 14th December 2007

Sir, I write in my capacity as chairman of Eden District Council’s planning applications committee to correct some rather misleading statements which have appeared in your newspaper surrounding Mr. Hoyle and the dwelling he has constructed at Carr House, Mallerstang.

It is understandable that his friends should support him in his endeavours, but the fact is there hasn’t been a home on this site for more than 50 years. Mr. Hoyle purchased a derelict building and set about constructing a dwelling without the requisite planning permission.

Furthermore he attempted to cover up his intentions and ignored warnings given by council officers. An enforcement notice has been served on Mr. Hoyle for this breach of planning control.

May I also clarify through your column that the recent application considered by my committee was not an application for planning permission. It was essentially an application to ascertain whether Mr. Hoyle’s unauthorised development is immune from enforcement action.

If someone occupies a building as a dwelling for more than four years, that occupation will be immune from enforcement action. This is what Mr. Hoyle claimed.

However, the evidence presented to the council by Mr. Hoyle himself did not show that this was the case. Indeed his statutory declaration indicates that he moved into the main building on site (the dwelling he was constructing) in April, 2005. Consequently the application was refused. Yours etc,

RICHARD TURNER

(Chairman, Eden Council planning applications committee)

Town Hall, Penrith.