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Caerphilly Politics South Wales

Caerphilly Council and businessman in legal battle over skip storage site

Photograph of the Caerphilly Skip Hire site (Pic: PDEW)

A BUSINESSMAN’S legal battle to store skips on land in Llanbradach will be decided by a Welsh Government-appointed inspector in November.

Alun Pitten, who owns Caerphilly Skip Hire, has lodged an appeal after Caerphilly County Borough Council rapped him over the storage of skips on land in Graddfa Industrial Estate.

Council officers served an enforcement notice on the business for a “material change of use”, claming “it appears to them there has been a breach of planning control” at the site.

It is alleged the “storage and distribution of skips” on the land was carried out “without planning permission”.

But Mr Pitten has disputed this, and is also appealing after the council “refuse[d] to grant a certificate of lawfulness of existing use of the land for the storage of skips”, according to a notice published by PEDW (Planning and Environment Decisions Wales).

In his appeal, the business owner said the site had “been used for the storage of skips for a period in excess of ten years, and in this regard there has been no material change of use or breach of planning control”.

Documents submitted to the Welsh Government show the council’s enforcement notice sought to “address the impact on residential amenity”.

The council said the business had “extended operations onto the southern area of the industrial estate” – a site it described as “significantly closer to residential properties”.

Skip hire businesses are “inherently noisy” and “no details of noise or operations management plans have been submitted”, the council alleged.

“Therefore, by virtue of proximity of the site to neighbouring residents, the uncontrolled use of the site for the storage and distribution of skips is considered to give rise to significant noise disturbance,” the council claimed in its enforcement notice.

Mr Pitten has challenged the council’s claims, however, arguing his firm has complied with policies and has used the site to store skips for many years.

“We do not consider it appropriate to require the removal of all skips associated with Caerphilly Skip Hire given the long -established and lawful use of the site,” his appeal reads.

The businessman has also challenged the accuracy of the paperwork the council submitted.

“The enforcement notice was issued with an incorrect date… and as such has not been considered to be correctly issued by the council,” he stated in his appeal.

A copy of the enforcement notice, submitted as evidence to the planning inspector, carries both the dates March 14 2021 and March 14 2022.

The appeal hearing is due to take place in Ystrad Mynach on November 15.