St Osyth: 32 properties illegally occupied during winter

CHALET dwellers who illegally stay in their seaside homes all year round will be forced to move.

Tendring District Council (TDC) are set to clamp down on those people who are continuously living in 32 properties in the Point Clear Bay area of St Osyth.

Current rules do not allow residents to stay in the chalets between November and February because they are in a flood risk area.

TDC is issuing notices to those flouting the law, giving them 17 months warning to find alternative accommodation. They say they do not want the area to become a “pocket of deprivation” and will help those affected.

The council’s planning chief, Carlo Guglielmi, said it is part of TDC’s on-going programme of pro-active enforcement investigations and action throughout the district.

“TDC is clamping down where occupation of chalet and caravan sites is in breach of the winter occupancy condition imposed as part of planning permissions,” he said.

“We have previously taken action against Haven Holiday Park in Brightlingsea and Bel Air Chalet Park in St Osyth.

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“In the coming days we will be issuing Breach of Condition Notices on 32 chalets in and around Colne Way at Point Clear, St Osyth.

“We do not want this area to become a pocket of deprivation.”

Mr Guglielmi said that various council departments – such as housing and benefits and revenues - will work together to help the residents resolve any issues they have.

He said similar action taken at Bel Air Chalet Park resulted in all residents successfully finding somewhere else to live for the winter.

He said: “In the letters we send out with the notices the council will recommend that the residents find somewhere else to live this winter.

“However, no enforcement action will be taken until November 2013 to lessen the impact on those affected.

“These people are committing an offence and we need to tackle this for their own safety and well-being but we will work with them to assist them with any problems they may face when they have to move out for the winter months.”