Home Farm, Upton
Home Farm, Upton

The owner of a Grade II listed building that fell into disrepair has been ordered to pay more than £1,200 by a court.

Stephen Smith, the proprietor of Home Farm, Main Street, Upton, failed to carry out repairs directed on a notice issued by Newark and Sherwood District Council.

After the court hearing the council said the prosecution would send a strong message that it took listed building status seriously.

Mr Matt Lamb, the council’s business manager for growth development, said: “The condition of the building and surrounding grounds were unacceptable and harming the amenity of the area.

“The council consider that prosecuting for failure to comply with the notice sends a strong message that such issues are taken seriously and people should not ignore formal notices.”

Smith, who was prosecuted for an offence under the Town and Country Planning Act 1990, failed to attend the hearing at Mansfield Magistrates’ Court.

Found guilty in his absence, he was fined £440 and ordered to pay £797 costs within 28 days.

The court was told planning officers from the district council obtained a warrant at a magistrates’ hearing in November 2016 to enter Home Farm following concerns about the state of the building.

After the officers visited the property, Smith was served with a notice in accordance with section 215 of the 1990 Act. The notice can be issued by a local planning authority if it is satisfied the amenity of an area is adversely affected by the condition of land or buildings within it.

Under the terms of the notice, Smith was required to carry out repairs to the building and to clear vegetation within its grounds by August 14, 2017.

The court was told the intention was to improve Home Farm’s visual amenity and preserve its status as a listed building.

When a council officer visited the property on September 21, Smith had failed to comply with the terms of the notice.