Sunday, November 22, 2009

Update on the Sorrento Hospital buildings, Anderton Park Road

Just an update on the Councils attempts to persuade the owner of 128 and 130 Anderton Park Road to get them repaired and fit for habitation.

128 and 130 Anderton Park Road was part of the former Sorrento hospital site that was enclosed by Anderton Park Road, Forest Road, Church Road and Wake Green Road. The hospital was closed in the early 1990s and the site sold off in lots.

The core of the site was developed as a housing developement, now called Oak Leaf Drive. One section – 128 and 130 Anderton Park Road – was sold in 1999 to a private owner, who has since done nothing to the buildings and allowed them to become an eyesore.

After the tornado in 2005, the building was left for an entire year with trees blown down in the front garden, holes in the roof and the building being gradually covered in graffiti.

In 2006 a Section 215 was issued on the owner to force them to tidy up the frontage, board up the windows, cover the holes in the roof and fence off the site.

Since then the Council has tried to encourage the owner to sell the property to local Housing Associations who are willing to repair the building. The owner has refused to negotiate.

Last week, the Cabinet member for Housing, Cllr John Lines (Bartley Green Ward) signed off a Cabinet report to start the process for the Council to compulsory purchase these buildings. The report will go to Cabinet (Property) Committee on 18th December.

If the report is approved, the legal process will then start to compulsory purchase these reamining site. This is not a quick process, especially if the owner is determined to object all along the way. However, in 95% of cases the threat of compulsory purchase is enough to force the owner to put the building right and get it re-occupied.

If the owner objects along the entire process, complete compulsory purchase will take about one year. The property will then be auctioned, with the condition that the new owner must have have the building repaired and reoccupied within one year. If they don’t, the building will be taken off their hands and the 10% deposit kept.