Attempt to evade parking condition fails

An enforcement notice requiring unauthorised parking to desist underneath a block of flats in south-west London has been upheld after an inspector clarified the terms of a condition that had been imposed in 1965.

The condition stipulated that use of the spaces should be "incidental to the enjoyment of a dwellinghouse or flat" and no trade or business use should be undertaken. The appellants argued that the condition did not restrict use of the spaces to occupiers of the flats. They maintained that their use by anyone who lived in any dwellinghouse or flat would fulfil the terms of the condition.

The inspector agreed that this initially appeared a persuasive proposition. However, he held that the starting point had to be the 1965 permission, which authorised the 24 flats and the car parking spaces beneath. The permission's reference to uses "incidental to the enjoyment of a dwellinghouse or flat" could only mean a dwellinghouse or flat within the development, he ruled.

Because the appellants were renting the spaces to non-residents, with some customers storing high-value cars for long periods, he inferred that a commercial use was being undertaken in breach of the condition.

DCS Number 100-051-175

Inspector Colin Johnson; Inquiry.

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