Boss’s derelict house troubles

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The managing director of the development company that wants to demolish Brookfield House in Tring has explained how it is a constant battle keeping out young people who vandalise it and smoke drugs there.

Eric Gadsden of W E Black Limited said: “We’ve stripped everything out and boarded up the gates but they break in and always will.

“It’s very difficult to make a dilapidated house secure.”

Neighbours have complained to the police about young people making noise, smashing windows, smoking and drinking at the empty property but there is little anyone can do as the youngsters make off as soon as officers arrive.

The country house has been sitting empty while the planning application to build nine detached homes with parking is being dealt with by Dacorum Borough Council.

The plans, which were submitted back in February, have been opposed by neighbours, who were concerned with traffic safety, and Mr Gadsden has said that he is planning on submitting revised drawings.

It means the property in Brookfield Close will be left empty for longer and Mr Gadsden is desperate to start work on it, not only because of the trouble caused by youngsters, but also to keep his business ticking over.

He said: “If we get planning permission we would start work immediately. We are desperately short of work to get on with as planning is a slow process.

“We only have one scheme to start. If we don’t have planning consent on something soon we will have to start making people redundant.”