Developer loses appeal over derelict home demolition

thisisoxfordshire: Martin Young Martin Young

THE owner of a derelict house in Old Headington is facing a legal bill after losing his latest battle with Oxford City Council .

Developer Martin Young , who owns 29 Old High Street, has had his appeal against a decision to refuse him planning permission to demolish the house and replace it with five three-storey houses, dismissed.

The house, which is in the Old Headington Conservation Area, had fallen into a state of disrepair and the city council ordered him to improve it in June 2011.

But just weeks later Mr Young submitted a planning application to knock the building down and replace it with the five houses. The application was branded by a planning officer as the ‘second worst planning application he had ever seen’ and was thrown out by the city council last December.

The developer appealed against the refusal for the application, and against the refusal for conservation area consent, and a hearing was held in front of a planning inspector in August.

Mr Young, who has not lived in the house for five years, had his appeal thrown out by the Planning Inspectorate yesterday.

Inspector Tim Wood also ruled that Mr Young would have to meet an as-yet undertermined amount of the costs of the appeal due to “unreasonable behaviour resulting in unnecessary expense”.

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The property developer, who said he has spent at least £7,000 on his own legal fees during the process, said he would now try to restore the house to its former beauty. He is awaiting the outcome of a further planning application, this time for partial demolition of the ‘scruffy’ parts of the building and an extension to the house.

Mr Young, said: “I am not surprised it has been thrown out. The application to demolish and redevelop was a desperate measure.

“There was a technical argument. They said they deemed it to be an eyesore, but they would not let me demolish it, so it was not that much of an eyesore.”

Mr Young , who said he is a “conservationist at heart”, said he was now more interested in doing “what the council wants”.

“The residents like the latest planning applications, I like it, it’s in my bones and it is the right thing to do. But if the sums go against you, it is pointless.

“I just hope the city council won’t be so anti-Martin Young they won’t grant me permission. I can’t see at the moment any serious reason why they can’t.”

Stella Welford, who lives next to the house and is a member of Friends of Old Headington, said: “I’m glad the appeal has been thrown out.

“It’s a lovely house and as I’m sure the inspector would understand it is a significant building.

“I think someone should take some action to make sure it is restored.”

The council previously issued an improvement order for 29 Old High Street, the deadline for which has expired, but no further action has been taken.

The council added: “We will need to wait for the outcome of this case, before any action to secure compliance with the improvement notice.”

TIMELINE

  • June 2011: 29 Old High Street, pictured, is put on Save’s annual Buildings at Risk register
  • September 2011: Martin Young files an application to knock the house down
  • December 2011: Mr Young’s application is thrown out
  • March 2012: The improvement deadline passes and no work has been carried out. Mr Young appeals against the decision
  • May 2012: The council says it will not be taking action over the improvement order until the appeal has been sorted out
  • July 2012: Mr Young submits a new application to restore the house
  • September 2012: the appeal is thrown out by the Planning Inspectorate.

Comments (13)

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11:21am Tue 25 Sep 12

grumpyofwhitecross says...

He really does live in cloud cuckoo land, this is a very nice area and his eyesore needs to be restored in keeping with the rest of the area. I think it boils down to the fact that it would cost him less to sell, demolish and rebuild than it would to restore the property. The money he has wasted on appeals would have been better spent doing repairs.
He really does live in cloud cuckoo land, this is a very nice area and his eyesore needs to be restored in keeping with the rest of the area. I think it boils down to the fact that it would cost him less to sell, demolish and rebuild than it would to restore the property. The money he has wasted on appeals would have been better spent doing repairs. grumpyofwhitecross

11:24am Tue 25 Sep 12

EMBOX1 says...

This guy is just a troublemaker, and has wasted tens of thousands of taxpayers money on his dump of a building site and all the inquiries, appeals etc.

He is also the same man who was recently in trouble for firearms offences.

Also the same man who is standing for the position of police commissioner for TVP!

You cannot make this stuff up.
This guy is just a troublemaker, and has wasted tens of thousands of taxpayers money on his dump of a building site and all the inquiries, appeals etc. He is also the same man who was recently in trouble for firearms offences. Also the same man who is standing for the position of police commissioner for TVP! You cannot make this stuff up. EMBOX1

11:38am Tue 25 Sep 12

Dilligaf2010 says...

Oh dear, what a pity, never mind!
He's owned the house for years, it's his own fault it's in the state it is.
He calls himself a property developer, it's time he pulled his head out of the sand, and got this renovated.
Oh dear, what a pity, never mind! He's owned the house for years, it's his own fault it's in the state it is. He calls himself a property developer, it's time he pulled his head out of the sand, and got this renovated. Dilligaf2010

12:27pm Tue 25 Sep 12

Sid Hunt says...

It would be rather ironic if he has to sell the house to pay the legal costs.
It would be rather ironic if he has to sell the house to pay the legal costs. Sid Hunt

1:53pm Tue 25 Sep 12

Dilligaf2010 says...

Sid Hunt wrote:
It would be rather ironic if he has to sell the house to pay the legal costs.
I'll give him a crisp fiver ;-)
[quote][p][bold]Sid Hunt[/bold] wrote: It would be rather ironic if he has to sell the house to pay the legal costs.[/p][/quote]I'll give him a crisp fiver ;-) Dilligaf2010

2:13pm Tue 25 Sep 12

bart-on simpson says...

What a fantastic, aposite wall keeping the patricians of Old Headington out.

The Old Headington crowd seem meek - wanting to restore a house which looks like a doss-house from the 1970s.

I still want to know the worst planning application ever seen by the planning officer - if this is only the silver medalist.

Where does he live? You need to have a word with his mother.

Hope to see him campaigning hard at Headington shops this Saturday to be our Police Czar.
What a fantastic, aposite wall keeping the patricians of Old Headington out. The Old Headington crowd seem meek - wanting to restore a house which looks like a doss-house from the 1970s. I still want to know the worst planning application ever seen by the planning officer - if this is only the silver medalist. Where does he live? You need to have a word with his mother. Hope to see him campaigning hard at Headington shops this Saturday to be our Police Czar. bart-on simpson

4:19pm Tue 25 Sep 12

xjohnx says...

Will the council please remember it has powerrs to do all work specified and then hold Mr Young liable for all costs and expenses ie, Give him a taste of his own medicine.
Will the council please remember it has powerrs to do all work specified and then hold Mr Young liable for all costs and expenses ie, Give him a taste of his own medicine. xjohnx

5:02pm Tue 25 Sep 12

ger elttil OX2 0EJ says...

Sid Hunt wrote:
It would be rather ironic if he has to sell the house to pay the legal costs.
The guy lights his cigars with £50 notes, he does this to get back at the council for their illegal actions against him years ago, and the council have had it in for him ever since. A petty personal war between both parties, but in Martin's case it is his money he stands to lose, but the council are willing to risk ours over this, and it is not the end either.
[quote][p][bold]Sid Hunt[/bold] wrote: It would be rather ironic if he has to sell the house to pay the legal costs.[/p][/quote]The guy lights his cigars with £50 notes, he does this to get back at the council for their illegal actions against him years ago, and the council have had it in for him ever since. A petty personal war between both parties, but in Martin's case it is his money he stands to lose, but the council are willing to risk ours over this, and it is not the end either. ger elttil OX2 0EJ

5:33pm Tue 25 Sep 12

Myron Blatz says...

Two wrong don't make a right, but maybe Dilligaf2010 (?) should also consider the way Oxford City Council has itself seemingly let properties decline - from public toilets to swimming pools, and leisure centres to community centres - under various administrations which have adopted the 'patch and mend' mentality to save money - and long before Capt Cameron's Pirates and those apparent 'cut-purses' at County Council began their reign of austerity.
Two wrong don't make a right, but maybe Dilligaf2010 (?) should also consider the way Oxford City Council has itself seemingly let properties decline - from public toilets to swimming pools, and leisure centres to community centres - under various administrations which have adopted the 'patch and mend' mentality to save money - and long before Capt Cameron's Pirates and those apparent 'cut-purses' at County Council began their reign of austerity. Myron Blatz

12:23pm Wed 26 Sep 12

Sid Hunt says...

ger elttil OX2 0EJ wrote:
Sid Hunt wrote:
It would be rather ironic if he has to sell the house to pay the legal costs.
The guy lights his cigars with £50 notes, he does this to get back at the council for their illegal actions against him years ago, and the council have had it in for him ever since. A petty personal war between both parties, but in Martin's case it is his money he stands to lose, but the council are willing to risk ours over this, and it is not the end either.
As you state, it is tax payers' money that the council uses, therefore, the 'attacks' against the council are actually attacks on the general populous. For someone with aspirations to public office the behaviour he demonstrates is especially ridiculous.

Would you rather that he was left to his own devices and ran roughshod?
[quote][p][bold]ger elttil OX2 0EJ[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Sid Hunt[/bold] wrote: It would be rather ironic if he has to sell the house to pay the legal costs.[/p][/quote]The guy lights his cigars with £50 notes, he does this to get back at the council for their illegal actions against him years ago, and the council have had it in for him ever since. A petty personal war between both parties, but in Martin's case it is his money he stands to lose, but the council are willing to risk ours over this, and it is not the end either.[/p][/quote]As you state, it is tax payers' money that the council uses, therefore, the 'attacks' against the council are actually attacks on the general populous. For someone with aspirations to public office the behaviour he demonstrates is especially ridiculous. Would you rather that he was left to his own devices and ran roughshod? Sid Hunt

4:56pm Wed 26 Sep 12

Sid Hunt says...

"He was treated with utter contempt by our council through their illegal actions,"

Enlighten me, I am aware the council disposed of his car but is there more?
"He was treated with utter contempt by our council through their illegal actions," Enlighten me, I am aware the council disposed of his car but is there more? Sid Hunt

6:35pm Thu 27 Sep 12

ger elttil OX2 0EJ says...

Sid Hunt wrote:
"He was treated with utter contempt by our council through their illegal actions,"

Enlighten me, I am aware the council disposed of his car but is there more?
Oh it was "only" his car Sid. It was the principle, think about it. He was wronged by an authority that thinks that it can ride roughshod over the little man, but cowers in the face of the University, and big businesses lawyers. If his property in beautiful Old Headington belonged to Brookes, it would now be a 50 flat student "village" E.G. Dorset House just a few hundred yards away,(as that is what they are now called) so do not come down hard on him Sid, one day it might just be you being victimised by the council. If you are free thinking then you must support his stance.
[quote][p][bold]Sid Hunt[/bold] wrote: "He was treated with utter contempt by our council through their illegal actions," Enlighten me, I am aware the council disposed of his car but is there more?[/p][/quote]Oh it was "only" his car Sid. It was the principle, think about it. He was wronged by an authority that thinks that it can ride roughshod over the little man, but cowers in the face of the University, and big businesses lawyers. If his property in beautiful Old Headington belonged to Brookes, it would now be a 50 flat student "village" E.G. Dorset House just a few hundred yards away,(as that is what they are now called) so do not come down hard on him Sid, one day it might just be you being victimised by the council. If you are free thinking then you must support his stance. ger elttil OX2 0EJ

3:32pm Tue 2 Oct 12

Sid Hunt says...

""only" his car" are your words not mine. As I understand the incident with the car it was virtually scrap and had been notified as facing removal as it was believed to be abandoned. Notwithstanding that, I would have taken the same approach as MY - taken issue with the council and obtained compensation. He achieved that and that should be the end of the matter. You state there were "illegal actions against him" but the car incident is the only one you cite. What are the others? What justifies his continual disruptive, costly actions against the public purse?

You have also stated "The guy lights his cigars with £50 notes..." yet insinuate that he is also "the little man" - it doesn't really stack up.

I have had my own disagreement with the council and have had to take action to resolve the issue but the issue has been resolved. I do not now rampage against it just to cause mischief and run up costs for others. It is not a sensible or pragmatic thing to do - it's rather immature to pursue such a course.

"If you are free thinking then you must support his stance." As I am 'free thinking', I choose to looks at the facts and arrive at my own conclusion. You, on the other hand, appear to believe that the man is infallible so choose not to think.
""only" his car" are your words not mine. As I understand the incident with the car it was virtually scrap and had been notified as facing removal as it was believed to be abandoned. Notwithstanding that, I would have taken the same approach as MY - taken issue with the council and obtained compensation. He achieved that and that should be the end of the matter. You state there were "illegal actions against him" but the car incident is the only one you cite. What are the others? What justifies his continual disruptive, costly actions against the public purse? You have also stated "The guy lights his cigars with £50 notes..." yet insinuate that he is also "the little man" - it doesn't really stack up. I have had my own disagreement with the council and have had to take action to resolve the issue but the issue has been resolved. I do not now rampage against it just to cause mischief and run up costs for others. It is not a sensible or pragmatic thing to do - it's rather immature to pursue such a course. "If you are free thinking then you must support his stance." As I am 'free thinking', I choose to looks at the facts and arrive at my own conclusion. You, on the other hand, appear to believe that the man is infallible so choose not to think. Sid Hunt

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