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Neighbours say illegal housing block in Hoxton is ‘getting taller’

PUBLISHED: 09:12 02 May 2017 | UPDATED: 11:49 06 July 2017

The illegal block is surrounded by scaffolding. Picture: Catherine Davison

The illegal block is surrounded by scaffolding. Picture: Catherine Davison

Archant

A brazen developer who was let off the hook after building an illegal block of flats in Hoxton has now made it even taller, according to disbelieving neighbours.

Planning permission has not yet been granted for the modified plans. Picture: Catherine DavisonPlanning permission has not yet been granted for the modified plans. Picture: Catherine Davison

Yusuf Sarodia was fined a record-breaking £700,000 in December 2015 for constructing a 34-flat tower in Stanway Street with no planning permission.

He was initially told to tear it down, but last year he came back with a modified bid and the town hall said if he made “substantial changes” he wouldn’t have to bulldoze it. But that application hasn’t been accepted yet, and the town hall has now told him to stop the construction work immediately.

Kevin Durrant, vice-chair of the Arden Estate Tenant Management Organisation, said Sarodia was “doing whatever he wanted”.

“He’s put a big wall up around it but it looks like it’s got higher rather than lower. It seems to have the same number of floors but he’s now putting a roof on it. We can’t really see it but someone round the back said it’s some sort of pointed roof.”

Kevin is still unhappy at the decision allowing the building to stay standing, and says unless the height is reduced whoever moves in will be staring directly into the bedrooms of people in his block.

He said: “It’s so far out of sync with the rest of the buildings. Work has been going on for six months but nothing has changed. They haven’t addressed the privacy issue – people will still be looking into our bedrooms when they move in.

“He should have to take a floor off it so it’s level with other buildings.

“Hackney Council seems to fob it off all the time, and let him get away with whatever he likes. He never seems to be accountable.”

Housing boss Kim Wright said: “We’re aware some works appear to have recently started. The developer has been told to stop all work until the required planning permission is in place. They have also been told any works undertaken without permission are entirely at their own risk. We won’t hesitate to take enforcement action if required.”

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