The property at 47 Albert Road in Wellingborough has been a thorn in the side of neighbours for the past decade with its boarded up windows and overgrown garden and reports of rats.
The council first decided to compulsory purchase the property back in 2013 after attempts to make the owner refurbish and reoccupy the property failed.
Now after seven years of attempts by officers to work with the owner, a planning inspector has decided that the authority can force the owner to sell the property. The council then plans to sell the property.
A report to go to the council’s resources committee on Wednesday (June 24) says: “Following a number of complaints and unsuccessful attempts to work with the owner of 47 Albert Road, Wellingborough; in July 2013 Services Committee approved action to be commenced regarding the compulsory purchase of the property. Informal attempts continued to encourage the refurbishment and reoccupation, but these failed.
At Services Committee in December 2014 approval was given to proceed with compulsory purchase of the property.
A further update was provided to Services Committee on 23 January 2018.
Officers pursued the compulsory purchase action, whilst still trying to informally work with the owner. The case resulted in the Planning Inspector holding a Public Inquiry on 21 November 2019. This was adjourned as the objector failed to attend.
A further Public Inquiry was scheduled for 4 February 2020. The objector again failed to attend but the Inspector continued with the Inquiry. Evidence was given by the council’s lead officer and also by Counsel. The Planning Inspector announced their decision to confirm the order on 16 March 2020. “
Council tax has not been paid on the terraced property since 2006.
The council says the sale of the house will have conditions attached to say the property must be refurbished and reocuppied. However there is an option that the authority could keep the property and use it to help accommodate homeless households.
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