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  • St Johns Plant Centre’s plans to appeal enforcement action

    Bosses at St Johns Plant Centre say they have every right to continue their popular Christmas Wonderland attraction.
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    Tendring Council served an enforcement notice on the centre last month. This was after advising the firm it was operating outside of its planning permission.
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    Last year, the council made a failed application for a High Court injunction to shut the event down due to traffic ‘chaos’.

    St Johns still appealing winding up order

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    But the garden centre has vowed to continue trading as normal and is preparing to host the festive event.
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    Council bosses say they were ‘minded to approve’ an application from the business to improve the access road. The firm appealed before the decision was made.
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    Fred Nicholls,corporate enforcement councillor, said the council had engaged with the business.
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    ?We are not against business success, and do a lot of work to support businesses in Tendring,? he said.
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    ?What we are against are businesses operating outside of planning permission.
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    ?Last year, a High Court judge turned down our application for a temporary injunction against the Winter Wonderland. He instructed all sides to work together to resolve the issues. We have been doing that.
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    ?It is disappointing that we have got to this stage. The nursery is looking to put on a Christmas Wonderland despite warnings from us throughout the year.?
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    He added: ?I welcome comments made by the nursery that it will appeal our enforcement notice.
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    ?This may seem unusual, but if the nursery appeals ? and in effect enters a planning application ? a judgement can be made on this issue once and for all. We can all draw a line under it.?

    Widening access road ‘not enough’

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    Tendring Council added that the centre?s application to widen an access road does not go far enough to address concerns.
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    Mr Nicholls said: ?The suggestion by the nursery that its site use and access are equal to applications approved by us for nearby housing developments, with new, acceptable road junctions is a gross oversimplification of planning matters.?

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