The company challenged an enforcement notice. It had used premises to provide temporary sleeping accommodation for more than ten years but without a planning consent to change of use. There was a break of five months after the after the first ten year period, whilst it was used as longer term accommodation, but then it reverted to the short term use. The Court was now asked: ‘what if any breach of planning control occurs where the use to which a London flat was put changed over three stages, 1) for more than ten years as temporary sleeping accommodation which made that use lawful, but 2) with a change for about five months to longer-term residential occupation, and finally 3) reverting back for the next four years to temporary sleeping accommodation. ‘
Held: The break was sufficient to constitute a deemed material change of use so as to allow the enforcement proceedings to begin. There was nothing unfair in the Council’s policy’s and the landowners use was in breach.
Ward LJ, Carnwath LJ, Lord Slynn of Hadley
Times 13-Apr-2005,  EWCA Civ 283
Town and Country Planning Act 1990 25 57(10, Greater London (General Powers) Act 1973
England and Wales
Updated: 09 May 2021; Ref: scu.276353