Enforcement team tackle property conditions

Successful Prosecutions sees Landlords Fined Following Hyndburn Council’s Enforcement Action

This January saw Hyndburn Borough Council successfully prosecute and fine three property owners who had failed to comply with legal property standards.

The properties concerned within each of these cases were unsafe and posed significant risk to both people and neighbouring properties if left in their poor condition.

Cllr Kath Pratt, Baxenden Councillor and Portfolio Holder for Wellbeing, said:

“It is important that local authorities prioritise enforcement action, like in these three cases, to ensure the safety of all those living in Hyndburn. By taking active measures to root out negligent property owners, Hyndburn Council are ensuring that these problems are dealt with swiftly and effectively.”

Cllr Miles Parkinson OBE, Leader of the Council, said:

“This wave of prosecutions ought to serve as a warning to other property owners to comply with legal standards and repair their property when told to. By enforcing this, we can drive up standards in the Borough more broadly and make Hyndburn a safer place to reside and work in. Keeping properties in such poor conditions creates a serious threat to both people and other property. I would like to thank our officers and enforcement team for this necessary action.”

Prosecutions are generally only taken where a property owner refuses to engage with council officers and there is no indication of the necessary work being carried out. In the case of an empty property at Westwood Street, a complaint was made to the council about the poor condition of the property following a serious fire that left the house without a roof.

The owner was served a notice under the Building Act 1984 that required him to complete improvement works on the property. This was not complied with. Instead, the property was left in a dire condition that was having a harmful effect on the neighbourhood. The matter was heard at Burnley Magistrates’ Court in December 2022 where the owner was found guilty and fined.

A complaint was, again, made to the council about a property at Belfield Road with a defective roof causing damp to the neighbouring property. Hyndburn Council investigated this and attempted to contact the owner who failed to respond to their correspondence.

An Environmental Protection Act 1990 notice was served to the owner to repair the roof, but he did not carry out this necessary work. The property owner continued to ignore Council correspondence and failed to comply with the requirements of a previous notice from 2022. This January, Blackburn Magistrates’ Court found the owner guilty and issued a hefty fine for his negligent actions.

In the third case, a complaint was made to the council about the poor condition of a property on Higher Antley Street that was impacting the area’s amenities. Notice was served to the owner under the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 which he failed to comply with. The matter was heard at Blackburn Magistrates’ Court in January 2023 where the owner was found guilty and faced a heavy fine.