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Illegal HGV business owner pleads guilty to planning breaches

Words: Laura Edgar
Illegal HGV business / iStock-822939700

A landowner and a business owner have pleaded guilty to breaching planning regulations for running a vehicle sales business from a Leicestershire farm without permission.

North West Leicestershire District Council (NWLDC) prosecuted Ian Evans, who owns Roecliffe Farm in New Packington, for carrying on a heavy goods vehicles (HGV) sales business that was required to stop under the terms of an enforcement notice.

Ian Evans and Ben Evans, owners of the HGV business, both pleaded guilty at Leicester Magistrates Court.

Planning permission to change the use of the farm so a HGV business could be run from it was refused in January 2005. This was in part because of road safety concerns.

NWLDC started an investigation into the farm after a report of a “near-miss” incident on the road outside the farm involving a HGV in August last year. They found the business to be running from the farm.

Alison Smith MBE, deputy leader and portfolio holder for community services, said: “Planning regulations are there for a reason – to protect our landscape and our residents from activity and development that is detrimental to the area. In this case, planning permission was refused partly because of highways concerns, then a near-miss car accident occurred. Thankfully, this was not serious and was reported to us, which has led to this successful prosecution and will end illegal business activity on the site.

“Simply ignoring planning regulations is not acceptable. We will pursue people who think they can act outside of the law.”

The case has been transferred to the Crown Court for sentencing.

Image credit | iStock