Hastings Borough Council’s (HBC) ‘grotbusting’ team have been in action again, resulting in the owners of two rundown buildings pleading guilty in court.
The council started its Grotbuster campaign in 2000 targeting run down or derelict buildings and structures for improvement. So far, 880 have been improved, 33 so far this year, winning the council praise both locally and nationally.
Last Friday HBC successfully prosecuted the owners of eyesore buildings who had not complied with enforcement notices served upon them.
Jedwing Limited pleaded guilty and were fined £250 with a £30 victim surcharge and ordered to pay £360 costs in respect of 44 Cambridge Road. The work at this property has now been completed.
Maxiwood Limited pleaded guilty and were fined £300 with a £30 victim surcharge and ordered to pay £320 costs in respect of 5 Wellington Square, a Grade II listed building.
Councillor Kim Forward, the council’s deputy leader said: “Hastings is a lovely town, with some fantastic buildings and architecture, which we are very proud of. The vast majority of property owners look after these buildings, but a few let us, and themselves, down.
“We understand that buildings do need constant attention, especially in a seaside town, and we always try to work with the property owners. The vast majority whom we have to issue warning letters to do take notice and make the necessary improvements. But we are serious, and will take enforcement action if necessary. If the owners still won’t act responsibly, we will not hesitate to take them to court, as in these cases.
“I hope these successful prosecutions send out a strong message to all property owners to look after their buildings, or face the consequences. And we will take further legal action if the work at Wellington Square is not completed to our satisfaction.”