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Dagenham firm slams council

PUBLISHED: 17:59 03 September 2009 | UPDATED: 10:57 11 August 2010

A DAGENHAM business has slammed the council for its heavy handed treatment over some overhanging shrubs. Staff at AJC Wilson Body Shop, a car repair company based in Rainham Road South, say they have been threatened with enforcement action because some

A DAGENHAM business has slammed the council for its "heavy handed treatment" over some overhanging shrubs.

Staff at AJC Wilson Body Shop, a car repair company based in Rainham Road South, say they have been threatened with enforcement action because some of their shrubs partially overhang a dead-end foot path.

According to Operation Director, Paul Cunningham, virtually no-one uses the 10ft wide path and the foliage "only sticks out about a foot."

Speaking of the council threat he said: "If it wasn't so daft, it would be laughable. I'm flabbergasted that the authorities would expand time, energy, cost and money over a few leaves overhanging the path, which is actually a cul-de-sac."

Mr Cunningham says the company, which has won a number of business awards, do normally maintain the shrubs but because some staff members have been on holiday over the summer months there hasn't been the manpower.

He added: "We do actually like the fence to be covered in some shrubs, however, as when they are cut back too much people have jumped over the top and stolen car parts from us."

The council officers have given the company a fortnight to trim the offending bush, before any further action is taken.

"We will do it as we don't want to end up forking out thousands of pounds, but I am astonished the council is taking this hectoring approach during a deep economic recession, when they should be encouraging and supporting businesses."

A Council spokesperson said: "The company was issued a standard enforcement letter under section 154 of the Highways Act.

"We are not asking them to do anything different from any other member of the public whose shrubs over hang the boundary of their property which would impact on the public highway.


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