Retford takeaway owner ignored order to take down signs

Mansfield Magistrates Court.
Mansfield Magistrates Court.

The owner of a Retford takeaway based in a Grade II listed building who ignored council orders to remove illuminated signs for three years has been fined.

Owner Mehmet Aydinoglu was originally told to remove the main sign, and a projecting sign, outside Charcoal Grill, on Churchgate, by Bassetlaw District Council in 2015.

Prosecutor Peter Burns, for the council, said Aydinoglu received a grant to repair the roof of the building in 2014, so was “fully aware” that it’s a listed building in a conservation area.

In January 2015, he was advised to make a new application if he was to stand any chance of keeping the signs, but no application was made.

When he did apply for advertising consent, it was turned down by the council, and he was given six months to appeal.

In November last year he received an enforcement notice to take the signs down, and by June 25, this year, no work had been done.

“Five letters were sent and none of them were complied with,” said Mr Burns. “Three years have gone by with the signs remaining in place.”

He said the signs had recently been taken down after the court summons was issued.

Aydinoglu told magistrates he had been at the takeaway for 23 years, and updated the signs for £3,000 four years ago.

He said family bereavements had distracted him from the business.

He showed magistrates pictures of other illuminated signs on the same street, and said: “I think they should be affected as well.”

He was told that he should have made these points on an application form.

Aydinoglu, 45, of Hallcroft Road, Retford, admitted failing to comply with the listed building enforcement notice, when he appeared at Mansfield Magistrates Court, on Friday.

He was fined £246, and ordered to pay £460 costs and a £30 government surcharge.