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02nd Nov 2022

Household who built tiny two-storey house on driveway respond ‘f*** you we’re going to keep it’

Charlie Herbert

‘We’re not on benefits, we spent our hard-earned money to build what we’ve built!’

A stubborn family who built a tiny two-storey house on their driveway instead of a garage have made it clear they’re determined to keep it – claiming it’s a gym that they use every day.

Earlier this month, the homeowner was ordered by the council to tear down the construction on his driveway.

In all started back in 2019, when he was given approval to build a single-storey garage outside his semi on Vaughton Street, Birmingham.

But instead of a garage, the man went ahead and built a two-storey family home at the end of his driveway, leaving council bosses shocked.

The owner has argued that there are only “minor differences” to the build which was approved, but the town hall were having none of it, and gave him until July this year to knock it down.

The household were ordered by the council to demolish the new-build by July (SWNS)

Planning Inspector Thomas Shields said the house is “substantially larger” than the approved garage.

He noted the new-build has two rooms on the second floor, made possible by a full-width box dormer extension out the roof.

Instead of a garage door, there was a little pedestrian entrance into the front room, along with several windows around the property.

“Since the appeal building bears little resemblance to the scale and design of the approved single-storey garage, it does not benefit from that planning permission,” Shields wrote.

“The requirements of the notice are: demolish the entire unauthorised detached structure and remove all demolished building materials and rubble from the premises.”

A spokesperson for Birmingham City Council said: “We served an enforcement notice for the demolition of the unauthorised structure when the owner lost at appeal.

“We are in discussions with the owner regarding timeline. Compliance with the notice was due by July 1, 2022.”

But the house is still there, and the family don’t seem too intimidated by the council, making it clear they have no plans to demolish the build.

A member of the household says the two-storey building is actually a gym (SWNS)

One woman in the house told the Sun: “Until the council gets in direct contact with us to tell us to demolish it, what we’re going to say to everyone is ‘f**k you because we’re going to keep it. And that’s that.”

The family claim that “no one around here has a problem with it” and that “all the neighbours think it looks nice.”

They continued: “It was a garage, we turned into a gym during Covid.

“The funny thing is when the council came to inspect it he saw all the gym equipment in there.

“There are punch bags in there, there are other gym machines.”

Another member of the household said: “We use it as a gym, we go in there every day. We all go in there – there are about four or five families around here. We all use the gym.

“We’re not ashamed of it. We’ve got nothing to prove to anyone. We’re not on benefits, we spent our hard-earned money to build what we’ve built.

“If and when the council decide the neighbours are moaning, get it down, we will deal with it in our own way.

“As it is at the moment, it’s staying.”

So, there you go. It looks like the council may have to up the ante if they want the gym/garage/house to be taken down.

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