Boston

Former councillor fined for unauthorised building works

A former county and borough councillor has been fined over £2,500 for carrying out unauthorised works to a listed building.

Patricia Wainwright was ordered to pay a total of £2672,63 for “raising the roof” at her grade II listed building on Witham Bank West, Boston, after a hearing at Lincoln Magistrates Court.

Ms Wainwright was fined of £1,500 with full costs amounting to £1022.63 awarded to the council and a victim surcharge of £150, making a total of £2672.63.

The fine would have been much higher, but the magistrates took into account that the builders left the site and therefore Ms Wainwright was left with unfinished building works.

Ms Wainwright pleaded guilty to the offence, having pleaded not guilty at an earlier hearing.

Council inspection

Boston Borough Council first became aware that extensive works were being carried out to the property in November 2017 despite permission being refused regarding the same works several years earlier.

Council officers inspected the property and found the entire rear element of the roof had been removed and the rear and side walls had been significantly raised.

New window openings and a new roof were also built with a different profile to that of the original.

Wainwright’s response

Ms Wainwright claimed the works did not affect the character of the building and were urgently needed to protect it from water ingress, which she believed was causing serious damp problems.

The council did not dispute repair works might have been needed, but felt what had been undertaken “clearly went over and above what was reasonably required to stop the water getting in to the building.”

The council said the works adversely affected the historic and architectural character of the building and listed building consent was required and the magistrates agreed with the council on this.

Ms Wainwright has now been served a listed building enforcement notice by the council requiring her to remove the unauthorised works carried out to the building, and reinstate it to its original state.

Failure to do so could mean further legal action taken against her.

Ms Wainwright also took to social media to dispute the matter further on Boston Borough Council’s Facebook page, accusing the council of bias.

Patricia Wainwright posted a response on Boston Borough Council’s Facebook page to the article regarding her recent fine. Photo: Boston Borough Council Facebook