Express & Star

Children’s home can remain open after bid to close it down is overruled

A children’s home can remain in place after the council was overruled by a government inspector.

A children's home can remain in place after Sandwell Council was overruled by a government planning inspector. Photo: Google Maps

The children’s home at Carolann House in Walsall Road, Great Barr, will be allowed to remain open after a bid to close it down by Sandwell Council was reversed in a new ruling by the government’s planning inspector.

Sandwell Council had rejected an application for the children’s home saying it was “unsuitable” for the area and neighbours had complained about “screaming” disturbing them throughout the day.

The council had served JN Healthcare Group, which runs the home, with an enforcement notice last June over an alleged breach of planning conditions after, it was claimed, the Walsall Road house had been converted into a children’s residential home without permission.

Permission was granted in 2010 for a ‘supervised residential home for up to four young people’, which JN Healthcare said it believed covered the building’s use as a children’s home – but the council disagreed.

The notice demanded an end to the “unauthorised” use of the house as a children’s home within four months “and to remove all materials and any other items from the property associated with the unauthorised use.”

However, JN Healthcare Group appealed to the government’s planning inspector over the enforcement notice and won.

The ruling means the enforcement notice has been quashed and the correct planning permission for the children’s home, for up to four young people aged between 11 and 18 years old, has been granted.