The Fourth Estate

Raising the Roof

Heard the one about the greedy landlord, who thought that his growing mini-empire of South London properties meant that he was exempt from applying for planning position? I had to pinch myself when this story first reached me. The arrogance of some people is truly amazing.

I remember the quick turn around of the building work carried out on the property on the corner of the Clap’ham Road and Crwedson Road. At the time I was impressed at the efficiency of the army of builders working on the conversion. On time and on budget, etc, but I did wonder what the rush was all about.

A new level was built upon the block of flats in just under a month. Bish, bash, bosh, a fancy new external plaster job, and then bodget and scarper faster than you can say “Lambeth Council planning permission.”

Now I can see the wider picture, if not the South London skyline, with the fourth floor being a bit out of character with the rest of the properties along the Clap’ham Road.

It seems that Mr Mukesh Andani is something of a serial planning permission refusenik. Three Brixton properties have had the same roof raising, regulation ignoring treatment, plus another flat in Stockwell Green.

It’s slightly comical, but also blatant rule breaking, with the fool thinking that he can simply construct a whole new tier across half of South London without any respect for the remainder of the environment.

A £10,000 fine is in place, with a possible six-month jail term hanging over Andani. He has already had three months to remove the fourth floor. No surprises that the original army of builders working on the conversion have yet to return for a restoration retreat.

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