• Gareth Jones

Solihull Success for Listers

Tyler Parkes has been successful in obtaining planning permission from Solihull MBC for their clients, The Listers Group Ltd., for the continued use of Alok House, Drayton Road, Solihull for pre-delivery inspection/preparation/valeting/servicing, minor repairs and MoTs of Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) vehicles, together with ancillary offices and parking.

The premises comprise a substantial detached industrial/warehouse unit with ancillary offices and are situated within an industrial/commercial employment area, part of the wider Cranmore Industrial Estate in Shirley, Solihull.

Our clients acquired the premises in 2017. We had previously investigated the planning history for the site but the Council’s records contained no evidence of any formal planning permission which established the building’s lawful use. However the marketing particulars described the premises as being in business (B1)/general industrial (B2) and storage/distribution (B8) use and our research indicated that these were the lawful uses and these uses had continued over many years. We advised our clients that their use of the building, for the storage, pre-delivery inspection and servicing of JLR vehicles (from their Stratford Road dealership), was lawful and they moved into the premises during that year, employing some 17 staff.

Listers subsequently needed to install a bespoke bay for MoT testing; however, to obtain the necessary licence to do so they needed to provide a copy of a planning permission that specifically mentions MoTs. No such document existed, so whilst the proposed MoT installation did not need planning permission in itself, it was therefore necessary to obtain a bespoke planning permission which specifically contained reference to this.

Planning Policies in the Solihull Local Plan, adopted in December 2013, describe the Cranmore Industrial Estate as one of the older employment sites in the Borough and the relevant policies encourage employment use in this location.

Tyler Parkes submitted the planning application accordingly, with a detailed supporting statement which explained the history and the clients’ requirements, analysed the policy context and demonstrated that the proposal was fully policy compliant and that there were no planning objections on any other grounds.

The planners accepted all these submissions and planning permission for the use, including for MoTs, was granted on 4th July.