Residents will have their say after tiles are removed from the Montreal Arms pub in Brighton Brighton News

NEIGHBORS can have a say in whether or not a developer should be required to replace vintage green tiles removed from a locally listed pub.

It comes after Charlie Southall scrapped plans to renovate the Montreal arms in Brighton so Ukrainian refugees could be housed there when neighbors questioned his motives.

Instead, workers began removing green tiles from the Albion Hill pub, as Mr Southall handed out a leaflet claiming they were beyond repair.

Brighton and Hove City Council issued a shutdown notice, but not before large sections of the tiles were destroyed.

The council issued an enforcement notice giving Mr Southall a year to restore the distinctive green tiles.

In April, his company, Dragonfly Architectural Services Ltd, and his planning agent Connor McCarron appealed against the advice.

This is now live on the Planning Inspectorate website – and interested parties have until Wednesday August 3 to comment.

This gives the local community the opportunity to have their say in an official capacity.

The appeal, which effectively interrupts the notice of execution, will be heard by written representations.

The Argus: workers hack tiles from the Montreal Arms in Brighton Workers hacking the tiles of the Montreal Arms in Brighton

After the tiles were removed, Brighton Pavilion MP Caroline Lucas called Mr Southall’s actions ‘terrible’ and ‘total vandalism’.

“It absolutely cannot go unchallenged,” she said.

Mr Southall previously said he bought the pub ‘on a whim’ before launching an £85,000 crowdfunding to redevelop it and allow Ukrainian women and children to live there for three years.

Those plans would have involved a change of use from pub to residential, which council will now only grant after a place has been advertised as a pub for at least two years at a fair interest-free rent.

A change of use to residential use would significantly increase the value of the building.

Ruth Boyd, a resident of Hanover, said while the aim was to convert the pub into accommodation for refugees, there was no need to remove the tiles.

“The fact that he chose to attack the ancient tiles – the most visible and arguably most controversial part of the building – feels like a petty and bitter attack on the community,” she said.

“He doesn’t have a building permit or apparently the funds to do the necessary work for his ‘philanthropic project’ inside the building.

“Instead, he wastes time and money hacking into the perfectly functional exterior of the property, knowing it would bother and offend those of us who want Montreal to continue as a public house.”

The previous owners, the Stonegate Group, asked to remove the tiles last year. The application was withdrawn in October 2021 after objections.

A leaflet which Mr Southall distributed to people asking why the workers were removing the tiles stated: ‘The new owner has exactly the same permitted development rights as any other owner in the area, and it is completely legal for external features be modified or deleted.

“It’s private property. Please respect the legal rights of the current owner.

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This notice was published: 2022-06-28 13:42:26

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