Man fighting Welwyn Hatfield Council appears at Supreme Court

PUBLISHED: 15:07 18 February 2011 | UPDATED: 16:00 18 February 2011

Alan, Ellen and Sarah Beesley inside thier converted barn

Alan, Ellen and Sarah Beesley inside thier converted barn

Casey Gutteridge

A MAN fighting to stay living in a £500,000 barn built on the Green Belt appeared at the highest court in the country to face Welwyn Hatfield Council.

Alan Beesley watched from the public gallery of the Supreme Court, as his legal team fought his case.

As reported in last week’s WHT the 40-year-old had applied for a certificate to lawfully stay in his barn, inside of which was a luxury family home, not the hay barn he had planning permission for.

The law states a homeowner can apply to stay in a dwelling if they have lived in it for more than four years.

He admitted deceiving Welwyn Hatfield Council, but his lawyer Alexander Booth asked the seven law lords to “maintain perspective”.

Mr Beesley had previously told the WHT he thought the council had a “bee in their bonnet” about his case and was surprised it had taken the action it had.

The seven law lords adjourned the case and will provide a written judgement in due course.

While awaiting the judgement chair of the council’s planning committee, councillor Stephen Boulton said: “It’s vital incidents like this are challenged to the full extent of the legal process, it’s not acceptable that people can set out to deceive the council.

“The vast majority of people do go through the proper planning procedures and, because this is the case, we have a duty to pursue those who deliberately ignore the planning regulations.”

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