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Saturday, 01 November 2014

The council took my furniture!

By Stephen Meredith

A FORMER West Cumbrian pub landlady was so aggrieved when council workers took away building materials she intended to turn into garden furniture she took the matter to court.

Roberta Cooper had hoarded joists, floor boards and roofing materials, which she said she wanted to transform into seating.

But Copeland Council regarded the items as “rubbish” and took them away to be dumped them on a rubbish tip.

The council also issued a notice under the 1949 Environmental Act to clear the site where she had been storing the materials.

Mrs Cooper, of Winder Brow, Frizington, was so angry with the council that she attempted to claim £1,500 compensation through the county court.

But Judge Robert Park, sitting at Whitehaven County Court, said he could not deal with the claim because she “should have appealed to the magistrates’ court against the notice”.

Instead, she was ordered to pay costs to the council.

Mrs Cooper, who told Judge Park she felt “aggrieved” by the whole episode, said after the case: “There were joists, floor boards and roofing materials and I was going to make garden seats out of them.

“I was re-cycling, which is what the council are spending thousands of pounds on by buying wheelie bins.

“They crushed the materials and sent the remains to a tip.

“But the judge struck it off his list because I had gone about it the wrong way.

“The materials were stacked up on pallets and breeze blocks and were not rubbish.”

A council official attending the case on Monday declined to comment after the hearing.

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