Action taken against takeaway

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Action is being taken against a fast food takeaway owner who carried out unauthorised work on a category B-listed building in Newton Stewart’s Dashwood Square.

The owner of the Star Fish Express, Mr Gunar, was notified by Dumfries and Galloway Council’s planning officers in June 2010 that changes he made to the property did not meet planning regulations. Enforce­ment notices were duly served on Mr Gunar instructing him to “remove the unauthorised UPVC shop windows and door and reinstate the property to its configuration prior to the execution of the unauthorised works, including reduction in height of sill of the right-hand window and installation of timber windows and doors” and “remove the unauthorised advertisements from the front and gable of the property as their excessive size and height were out of scale with the building”.

The takeaway owner then made retrospective planning applications but these were turned down. He then appealed to Scottish ministers but his appeals were dismissed.

By 2012 the owner had still not complied with the council’s enforcement notices. In July last year he was advised by letter that the council’s intention was to report the offences to the procurator fiscal.

In reply, Mr Gunar advised the council that he was unable to complete the works and that he was not prepared to pay for the work.

Mr Gunar was given a final chance to comply with the enforcement notices in 2012 but the council received no response within the required 14 days.

At next week’s meeting of the planning applications com­mittee, the local authority is to apply for delegated authority to take action under the Town and Country Act (Scotland) and do the work themselves.

Quotations for the work have been estimated at between £9500 and £10,000, and the local authority has the right to recover its expenses from the owner.