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Hare Hatch Sheeplands owner threatened with jail over planning dispute

The High Court ruled on Friday the owner of Hare Hatch Sheeplands garden centre would face jail unless it complies fully with an injunction by July 17.

The owner of the London Road garden centre, Rob Scott, has been embroiled in a planning dispute with Wokingham Borough Council (WBC), which took out an enforcement notice against what it described as ‘unauthorised developments’.

WBC successfully argued that Sheeplands is not a plant nursery and therefore all retail activity outside of the farm shop breaches the injunction. This includes plants and gardening products.

The hearing also ruled that a fishmonger could not be moved within the farm shop at this time but could be part of a future planning application.

A spokesman for Sheeplands said: “What we would like is to check our compliance with the council to ensure we are doing what they expect, so we’ve asked them to clarify some of the injunction.

“However, they don’t seem willing to speak with us and help us to comply, which is what we’re committed to doing. The council said at the court they don’t think we’re a plant nursery. But we can’t meet the terms of the injunction if the council don’t define what they think one is.”

A spokesman for WBC said: "Due to the ongoing legal proceedings we cannot comment further on the dispute regarding Hare Hatch Sheeplands. However, Mr Scott has and continues to be advised by his own legal and planning professionals."

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