An eyesore house has been given a makeover by the council after the owner failed to respond to a enforcement notice.
Now the council is taking steps to recover its money – expected to total more than £15,000 – if necessary by putting a charge on the land.
Brighton and Hove City Council said that the house – at 2 Ryde Road, Brighton – had fallen into considerable disrepair.
It had broken windows, peeling paint and plaster, window frames that had decayed beyond repair and an overgrown garden full of dumped items.
Planning enforcement officers served an enforcement notice on the property, which is near the top of Elm Grove, nearly two years ago, in January 2009.
The notice required the owner – a Mr Cannon – to repair the windows, rerender and repaint the walls, remove debris, cut back overgrown vegetation and fence off the back garden.
Despite repeated efforts to contact Mr Cannon, he failed to respond to council requests and was prosecuted in October 2009, fined £500 and ordered to pay costs of £720.
After the prosecution, officers made renewed efforts to try to get Mr Cannon to comply without success so the council decided to take action to restore the eyesore property.
Councillor Lynda Hyde, chairman of Brighton and Hove’s planning committee, said: “Officers have spent a considerable amount of time trying to persuade the owner of this property to comply with the enforcement notice.
“Unfortunately despite being prosecuted the owner still failed to take any action.
“The council was left with no alternative but to instruct contractors to carry out the necessary works.
“I know that the local residents are very pleased with the work that they have done as both the condition and appearance of the property has been greatly improved.”