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Fighting the good fight against bad landlords

Rogue landlords in Waltham Forest are being warned to get their house in order as the relentless pursuit of landlords constructing ‘bed in shed’ properties continues. 


The infamous ‘narrowest house in London’ – as the plywood monstrosity erected at 105 Manor Road, Leyton was dubbed by the national press – was finally restored to its previous condition recently following the Council’s pursuit of enforcement action.


The owner, Mohammed Akhlaq, 53, of Zim Properties, 733 High Road Leytonstone had squeezed the property between a gap in a row of terraced housing in early May last year, replacing an existing garage.


He was promptly issued with an Enforcement Notice by the Council, requiring him to remove the bathroom, kitchen and internal portioning and restore the garage to its original condition.


Mr Akhlaq’s appeal against the notice to the national Planning Inspectorate proved futile, with the inspector not only upholding the Enforcement Notice, but also ordering Mr Akhlaq to contribute towards the Council’s costs.


Councillor Clyde Loakes, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Environment, said, “I’m pleased that we have finally managed to get the landlord to return the property to its original condition.


“Landlords need to understand that simply undertaking works to their properties without Planning Permission will not go unnoticed. We will spot changes and we will make them reverse what they have done at their own expense.”


A different borough landlord – Mr Peter Anuba, of 207 Billet Road, Walthamstow – is trying to defy the Council and the Planning Inspectorate in relation to a bed in shed structure at 72 Cecil Road, Walthamstow.


Mr Anuba was issued with an Enforcement Notice last year to have the outbuilding removed, but appealed to the national Planning Inspectorate. Again the Inspectorate agreed with the Council’s decision and the appeal was dismissed, as was Mr Anuba’s plea to keep the outbuilding as a gym/store.


Unfortunately Mr Anuba had not fully complied with the Enforcement Notice when Council Officers inspected the property shortly after the 20 August deadline and accordingly the case will now be escalated to a prosecution.


“If this landlord wants to take the matter through the courts then we are happy to fight our corner,” said Cllr Loakes. “However, I would warn him that last year we had our contractors demolish a property for a landlord who sought to ignore our enforcement action, so he should be under no illusions – we will take this all the way until his bed in shed structure is reduced to rubble.”











PHOTOS:



  1. 105 Manor Road, Leyton restored from the plywood monstrosity that is photo 2

  2. See 1.

  3. The bed in shed structure at 72 Cecil Road, Walthamstow.

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