DC Casebook: Housing: Conversion - Bird cages considered to alter retail use

An enforcement notice alleging that the owner of a post office and shop in Bedfordshire has reduced the retail area by storing a large selection of privately owned birds and other items has been upheld following a site inspection.

The appellant's home consisted of rooms above the shop, accessible by stairs at the rear. Cages holding birds and household items were present in the upstairs rooms and around the stairs. This pattern was beginning to be established in the shop, with a large number of bird cages and personal effects present at the inspector's visit.

The storage of the animals was unrelated to the shop use, he held. In his view, there was a marked difference between keeping one or two parrots as pets or to entertain customers and the circumstances he encountered in the shop. A material change of use of the ground floor from retail to residential had occurred, he concluded.

DCS Number 100-064-765

Inspector Christopher Hoult; Written representations

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