Ian Shires

Liberal Democrat Councillor for Willenhall North Ward, Liberal Democrat Group Leader, Walsall MBC Learn more

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Cannock Road – Unauthorised car sales?

by Ian Shires on 14 August, 2019

An unauthorised car sales appears to be operating from the former Tardis Environmental site in Cannock Road, New Invention. It began life two to three months ago as car storage, which was when it was first brought to our attention. Naturally we asked Planning Enforcement to investigate.

The initial contact feedback was that it would be nothing more than just storing vehicles for an on-line car sales business. Since then it has become obvious that it’s more than just for the storage of cars and more and more it takes on the appearance of a car sales site. Either way, in our view, it would constitute a change of use in which case a planning application would be required. There is also a question mark about the use of the former office use on the site.

Many of you will know that the site is directly opposite the entrances of both New Invention Infants and Junior Schools. It’s also next to a busy pedestrian crossing and a few doors away is New Invention Health Centre. You really could not pick a worse place for a car sales business.

This is just one of many sites across the borough which are under investigation by Walsall Council’s Planning Enforcement Team. We say Team, but in reality we are talking about two hard pressed officers, whose job it is to pursue all the issues like this one across a town with a population of around 270,000 people. Is it any wonder ordinary hard working people feel so frustrated by a system which is stacked against them?

We are demanding that, because of its location near two schools on a busy road through our area, urgent action is taken to bring this potentially dangerous situation to a close.

   2 Comments

2 Responses

  1. Catherine Buckwell says:

    Dear Ian – I replied to you re the above on Nextdoor but know you are up against some opposition so contacting you direct.
    You may already have this info but the Car Cart co is registered in Birmingham and the owner/director is a Lithuanian named Evaldas Zukas. I got this information from the Companies House website. I tend to be suspicious about used car dealers just turning up from nowhere!
    Catherine Buckwell

    • Ian Shires says:

      Hi Catherine
      Thanks for contacting me direct on this issue, much appreciated and thanks for the additional information which I will pass on to Planning Enforcement.
      I put the post up as I said on a need to know basis. A number of people had asked what was going on on this site. Now it would seem that there are some who think that folk can do whatever they like wherever they like and rules aren’t for them. This is a case in point. There is evidence that they tried to do the same in Longbridge, Birmingham. Eventually a planning application was submitted and Birmingham City Council said no.
      When Planning Enforcement first made contact with the owner of the business they were told that the site was solely for the storage of vehicles which were being sold on-line. Events have shown that this is not the case. Further visits have been made and the owner has been informed of the process he needs to go through. There are a number of issues which need to be clarified beside the car sales issue. The house on the site was used by the previous owners as offices and a change of use was agreed some years ago. It appears that someone is living in the building. If indeed that is the case a change of use application needs to be made. There is also some question as to who owns which part of the site. All owners have to be served with notices for information etc so this is causing delays. As it stands right now it is expected that it will be October/November before the issue can go to Planning Committee to decide what action the council needs to take.
      The site is in private ownership(s) so what the council can do is limited to making sure that whatever goes on on the site complies with planning regulations. Ideally the site should be used for much needed residential development.
      Once again thanks for contacting me. If you have any questions/suggestions please do not hesitate to get back to me.
      Kind regards
      Ian

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