South Gloucestershire Council has successfully prosecuted a Bristol builder, who was ordered to pay a total of £8,806.76 in fines and costs after pleading guilty to breaching building regulation rules.
The prosecution was brought against David Appleton, 63, of Speedwell Road, Bristol after he was found to have installed dangerous electrical circuits in two South Gloucestershire properties.
Between October 2017 and January 2018 our Building Control team was made aware of building regulation breaches relating to the installation of new electric circuits at two separate properties, one in Downend and the other in Lyde Green. After further investigation by council officers more than 40 faults were found in total, with over 30 relating to dangerous faults requiring immediate attention.
The case was heard at Bristol Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday 18 July. Appleton pleaded guilty to failing to comply with building regulations and was fined £4,000. He was also ordered to pay council costs of £4,298.76, compensation of £169 to each of the two home owners and a victim surcharge of £170, making a combined total of £8,806.76.
Cllr Paul Hughes, Cabinet Member responsible for Communities and Tourism, said: “This case demonstrates the importance of ensuring the correct route is followed when undertaking any building work. Construction is a complex arena where unscrupulous individuals can take advantage of customers’ unfamiliarity with legislation, and profit from cutting corners. Our Building Control team has a very important role to play in maintaining a level playing field for local businesses and to make sure householders can be confident that where unsatisfactory and unsafe work is evident it will be followed up. In this case, we stepped in when a complaint was made and engaged with NAPIT, to successfully bring this prosecution and the outcome proves that a hard line will be taken by the council on those who profiteer at the expense of others’ safety.”
David Cowburn, NAPIT’s Chief Operating Officer, said “I was delighted to hear the outcome of this court case, and I hope it sends a clear message that non-compliance with the building regulations is unacceptable. This case also serves as a reminder that using qualified and competent electricians to undertake work can help to stop dangerous situations like these from arising. South Gloucestershire Council have set a fantastic example for Local Authorities across the country in pursuing this prosecution, and we would like other authorities to follow their lead to ensure that the building regulations are respected.”
Residents who see or are affected by illegal building works are encouraged to report it by telephoning 01454 868004 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
The building control process exists to make sure that buildings are properly designed and constructed. For more info visit www.southglos.gov.uk/buildingcontrol