D-Day for £1m mansion built without permission
A £1m Mirfield mansion today faces demolition.
Kirklees councillors refused retrospective planning permission for the nine-bedroomed home in Huddersfield Road last month.
A decision is being made today about what will happen next after council officers made a dramatic U-turn.
They originally urged councillors to allow businessman Azam Yaqoob to keep his mansion when his application was discussed at the last Heavy Woollen planning committee meeting in January.
But today planning officers advised an order to rip it down.
The bitter row erupted when Mr Yaqoob, who owns Mr Sparkles Car Wash in Dewsbury, began building last year.
He received planning permission for extensions to an existing house on the site. But instead of extending it the house was almost completely knocked down and re-built.
It now features a balcony, electric gates and a triple garage.
Mr Yaqoob was then ordered to apply for retrospective planning permission for the new property.
Protesters living nearby have dubbed the controversial three-storey building "too large, ugly and out of keeping with the area".
After councillors snubbed Mr Yaqoob he declared he would fight on and threatened legal action if he was forced to demolish his home.
Mirfield councillor Martyn Bolt has now called for a change in law.
"The Government needs to take a long hard look at the planning laws. It seems ridiculous that people need planning permission yet they can technically build what they want when they want to.
"If it was law that you could not start building until you had planning permission this kind of problem would not happen."
Clr Bolt praised the councillors who he said had taken a tough stance.
"It is absolutely right and proper the council is taking a hard line," he said. "People cannot just go around building what they want - it is chaos. In the past year we have seen it time and again. If Mr Yaqoob thought Kirklees would go easy, he was wrong.
"The authority has proved when it comes to planning they pursue people. Just take Castle Hill and the Thandi Partnership as an example."
Councillors were expected to make a final decision late today at Dewsbury Town Hall.