On the 3rd May 2007 Cllr Philip Martin (pictured below) was elected to SDC for the Folkestone Central ward with 487 votes. He has been a sitting Cllr for 9 years.
Now as an elected Cllr you would expect him to understand the Planning rules just as much as anyone else in Shepway especially as he sat/sits on the Development Control Committee which deals with planning applications, and no doubt having received the offer of some training; which he may or may not have taken. Prior to Mon 22 Dec 2008 Cllr Martin had altered a dwelling from a 4 bed property to a single flat and a maisonette. The Strategic Housing Manager stated that 4 bed properties were in demand but regardless of that fact at that time Cllr Martin went ahead and changed the property. Then on the 22/12/08 Cllr Martin puts in an application for planning permission after the conversion had been completed. All the documents for planning permission can be seen here Y08/1255/Sh
Now there was an Objection Letter by a Resident which fell on deaf ears and permission was granted.
In Nov 2011 Cllr Martin converted a former Doctor’s surgery. The work was completed in April 2012. In May 2015, 3 years after the conversion had taken place Cllr Martin made an application for, Retrospective Planning Permission which he subsequently received.
The retrospective application documents can be seen here
Now Cllr Martin had to do this as he was looking to sell the house, which he did in Oct 2016 for the sum of £233,000.
Cllr Martin is, as we said, very aware as he sits on the Development Control Committee so cannot make any excuses really for not knowing the necessary procedure for seeking planning permission.
Also Cllr Martin is/was an estate agent, running his own business House Martins Estate Agents so should at least have some understanding of the planning rules.
Again, it demonstrates Double Standards as many residents who try to use retrospective planning permission do not always succeed in their efforts.
Might Cllr Martin explain his actions? We think not and as we said it demonstrates that their appears to be one rule for Cllrs and another rule for the rest of us. How much longer will this continue?
The Shepwayvox Team