An independent planning expert will be appointed to help solve a bitter planning row between the owner of an iconic Ripon building and the borough council.
A third-party conservation and listed building expert will determine whether the work of Stanley Mackintosh – who has lived in Grade II listed St Margaret’s House on Kirkgate for 11 years and has continued to renovate his home despite warnings from Harrogate Borough Council – breaches planning laws.
“It is obviously a fair resolution,” said Mr Mackintosh, who wants to change the internal layout of the former bookshop to create a self-contained annex with rentable rooms to provide him with a retirement income as part of a house share.
“Subject to legal advice and proper safeguards, I am minded to accept this compromise,” he said.
Under section 7 of the Planning (Listed Building and Conservation Areas) Act 1990, it is an offence to carry out work to a listed building if it affects its character as a building of special architectural or historical interest. Harrogate Borough Council said the offer to appoint an expert is conditional on Mr Mackintosh stopping work on his house immediately.