Drainage for new flats at Sanditon, Sidmouth

24 Jun

A Sidmouth correspondent has asked SIN to pass on this information:

New flats at Sanditon, Station Road

This is a warning about Sanditon, Station Road – ZeroC is the developer and KDJ Slade is the building contractor

As work on the replacement for the old Fortfield Hotel draws to a finish, there is one last battle which all the surrounding neighbours have been fighting for many many months: this is about the drainage strategy for sewage and surface water from the new flats and surrounding site.

ZeroC gained planning permission for a perfectly acceptable solution to their drainage strategy. Planners, South West Water, Building Inspectors and neighbours were happy with it. 

Then, in July last year Slade and ZeroC submitted a Planning request for a different, cheaper approach. This new approach poses a very real threat to the Sidmouth Cricket, Tennis and Croquet Club and to the Grade II* Listed buildings of Fortfield Terrace. The new proposals were not accepted by East Devon Planners. Many of the residents’ organisations and Clubs that are concerned about this have been trying to negotiate an acceptable compromise ever since the cheaper proposal was submitted to EDDC.

Now, only 3 months before the flats are occupied, Slade have begun constructing their drains following the rejected proposal.

It appears that the developers are trying to face EDDC with a “fait accompli” and force them to approve it.

What this means for the purchasers of the new flats is that if this unacceptable solution to drainage from Sanditon actually causes damage to the Club house, the croquet lawn or Fortfield Terrace, then there will be ongoing neighbour legal claims against the new owners. These claims would be funded by the lawyers of Buildings Insurance firms, not by residents. But the damages may well have to be paid for by the owners of the new flats.

So this is a warning to prospective purchasers of the Sanditon flats:

Make sure you get a proper Building Control Completion Certificate from EDDC before completing your purchase. I think that is probably the only way you will be able to duck responsibility for any damage caused by the Sanditon drainage. EDDC would then have to pay up because of allowing an unsatisfactory drainage solution to be installed against their professional recommendation.

KDJ Slade are registered as a “Considerate Contractor” – they aren’t being so in this situation

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