Owners fined thousands for failing to make repairs to landmark Kingswood building

The owners of the former Linden Hotel in Kingswood have been fined more than £14,000 and ordered to pay £667 in costs at Bristol Magistrates’ Court for failing to ensure the exterior of the building was properly maintained.

M B Estate, of Station Road in Shirehampton, were prosecuted for failing to comply with a Section 215 notice issued by South Gloucestershire Council as the poor external appearance of the building was having a detrimental impact on the local area.

The notice required that the external appearance of the building be improved by repairing all boarded-up windows and doors, as well as making repairs to the exterior render, the front canopy and repainting the building.

The owners were previously found guilty of the same offence on 20th November 2019 which resulted in a £1,000 fine.

Today South Gloucestershire Council’s Cabinet Member for Planning, Transport & Strategic Environment, Cllr Steve Reade, said: “This successful prosecution and significant fine demonstrates that we will not tolerate buildings being left in an unsafe and unsightly condition which can have a detrimental impact on an entire community. It is important to the council how people feel about their local area when out and about, and that we tackle eyesore properties that can drag the rest of the area down.

“The owners were provided with ample opportunity to make the necessary repairs and bring the exterior of the building up to the minimum required standard, but still failed to do so. I am pleased that the courts have handed down such a hefty fine which I hope acts as a deterrent to others.

“Our future vision for Kingswood is ambitious and we are committed to revitalising the area as a cultural hub with an array of retail, residential, business and leisure options through the Love Our High Streets project, and our Future High Streets Fund bid.”

Kingswood MP Chris Skidmore welcomed the successful prosecution and said: “Local residents deserve to be proud of where they live and those in our community who actively avoid their responsibilities and are complicit in bringing down the area around them should be held accountable.

“I am proud to be working with the council and Government ministers to improve our area where possible, as well as Mayor Tim Bowles and the West of England Combined Authority on our ambitious vision for improving the look and feel of Kingswood High Street.”

Anyone who has concerns over the poor external appearance of a building within South Gloucestershire can report it by calling 01454 868004, or by visiting https://beta.southglos.gov.uk/report-a-planning-breach/