Couple fined £6,500 after using Uxbridge home as a car sales showroom
Monday 11 July 2022: A husband and wife have been fined £6,500 after ignoring a planning enforcement notice ordering them not to use their Uxbridge home as a car sales showroom and garage
The court was told how an investigation by Hillingdon Council had found that there had been a material change of use of the pair's home from a residential property to land used for car sales, repairs and vehicle storage.
The pair first came to the council's attention in early 2017 after complaints from residents that more than 20 cars were being parked at the front and rear of the detached home and appeared to be being used for car sales, the court heard.
Use of the land for this would require planning permission which had not been sought, and council officers investigating in March 2017 found nine cars parked in the driveway, with more to the rear and two parked on road immediately outside.
A planning contravention notice was served that month, however the complaints continued into 2018. The council proceeded to issue an enforcement notice in September 2018, requiring the use of the land for car sales, storage and repairs to cease immediately, the court heard.
The notice was served against the pair, and the company they were found to be directors of, Harlington Auto Car Sales and Service Ltd. They appealed the enforcement notice but the appeal was dismissed in October 2018.
The court heard further investigations in October 2019, December 2020 and June 2021 all showed continued illegal use of the home and the notice had been ignored, leading to the council pursuing a prosecution.
Ajay Prasad was fined £6,000, ordered to pay £2,070.50 costs and £190 victim surcharge. Reshmi Prasad was fined £500, ordered to pay £2,000 costs and £190 victim surcharge.
Cllr Eddie Lavery, Hillingdon Council's Cabinet Member for Residents' Services, said: "This is another brilliant result following a strong investigation from our planning enforcement team.
"This couple's business has caused years of annoyance and disruption to the lives of their neighbours and they've shown scant regard for authority when they've been told to stop.
"This result shows we won't relent in taking to task those who flout the law in Hillingdon."