Aberystwyth planning row flats escape demolition
Student flats facing demolition because they breached guidelines have been awarded planning permission after an appeal.
Last year Ceredigion council demanded that two blocks in Aberystwyth be pulled down by June this year.
It accused property developer Geraint Dafis of ignoring an enforcement notice for one block called Ty Newydd and he was fined £20,000 in court last year.
Mr Dafis denied the charge and the fine was cut to £5,000 on appeal last week.
Ty Newydd and an extension to the Boar's Head Hotel flats next door, which are also owned by Mr Dafis, were both facing demolition and had been issued with an enforcement notice.
It followed two retrospective planning applications for an extension to the Boar's Head flats which were refused.
Both blocks of flats are thought to house up to 50 students.
A council spokesman said: "Mr Dafis has now received planning permission for the entire development by virtue of the Inspector's appeal decision. Therefore, there is no requirement to demolish any building.
"As the local planning authority, the council has followed planning legislation in pursuing Mr Dafis for the unauthorised development and issued an enforcement notice against that development."
Ceredigion council said last year Mr Dafis had been given planning permission in 2010 to build a detached three-bedroom family house with a garage and parking in Queen's Road, Aberystwyth.
However, it said he erected a far bigger building with at least double the bedrooms, three large bathrooms and considerably more living areas.
There was also no space available for parking and, rather than a single family home, it had been used to accommodate students, the council added.
The authority said after Mr Dafis failed to comply with an enforcement notice on Ty Newydd requiring the building to be demolished, he was prosecuted for breach of the notice.
Aberystwyth Magistrates' Court fined him £20,000 at a trial last August under the Town and Country Planning Act 1990.
But the fine was reduced to £5,000 on appeal at Swansea Crown Court last Friday.
Geraint Dafis has been asked to comment.