Sunday, 15 December 2019

No solution to derelict houses

A PAIR of derelict homes in Sonning Common are unlikely to be compulsorily purchased.

The semi-detached properties in Peppard Road have been in a state of disrepair for almost 40 years and residents and the parish council want them to be repaired or demolished.

However, David Bartholomew, who represents the village on South Oxfordshire District Council, the planning authority, told a parish council meeting that acquiring a compulsory purchase would be complex.

He said: “It would be a significant expense for the district council with an uncertain return in terms of what is best for the community. However, the matter is ongoing. I have pressed the issue with the district council.”

Residents say the houses are an eyesore and are infested with rats and used by squatters and people taking drugs. There is also Japanese knotweed growing in the gardens.

Cllr Bartholomew said: “There seems to be nothing that can be done on environmental health and safety grounds at the moment. There’s no obvious imminent action.”

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