‘Party mansion’ set to go quiet amid battle over noise complaints

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Ringwood party house
The Ringwood ‘party house’ that was hired out for stag dos and hen parties

THE party appears to be over for boisterous stag and hen dos at a Ringwood mansion after the owner dropped his appeal against enforcement action.

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Neighbours of the property, known as Crockets, at Linford Road, Hangersley, complained that up to 25-strong groups of rowdy men and women were renting the thatched-roof, two-storey manor house for weekends, forcing New Forest District Council to get involved.

Last December the authority issued a notice to owner Martin Risdale ordering the action cease because a change of use occurred in turning the domestic home into a party house.

The district council told him he would have to formally lodge retrospective planning permission.

However, Mr Risdale appealed, contesting the excessive noise allegations and claims the parties were causing more vehicle movements to and from the property.

He also alleged airbnb advised him any UK home could be listed online to let for 90 nights per calendar year without requiring a change of use, provided the owners paid council tax, adding: “We have never exceeded this amount.”

Ringwood party house
Ringwood ‘party house’ living room

But a notification issued on Tuesday morning said Mr Risdale had withdrawn his challenge of the enforcement notice. It gave no other details.

Planning documents available online detail how NFDC inspectors went to visit Mr Risdale, who lives on the site but in another property with his family, in 2018.

He claimed it was let at weekends for large group bookings of up to 25 only between March and October, Christmas and New Year and weekly during August

The report added Mr Risdale also told officers he did not wish to change the use of the property due to the “implications, council tax, utilities and breach conditions of their mortgage”.

He had pledged in conversation with officers to cease using it for parties in December of that year but complaints continued subsequent to that. There were seven in May 2019 and five in June.

Ringwood party house
The mansion was accused of hosting parties of up to 25 people

The report added: “Over the weekend of the 9th May 2019, an environmental health officer had installed noise monitoring equipment.

“The results reported by Environmental Health established that the activities at the site were noisy. However, a statutory nuisance has not been established and an abatement notice has not been served.”

NFDC noted the property was marketed under the banner of New Forest Manor House by a company called Girl Boss Ltd catering for large groups and advertised on big-cottages.com, henpartyvenues.com, lastminute-cottages.co.uk, homeway.co.uk and airbnb.

As reported in the A&T, those adverts stated parties of up to 25 people can hire the residence for a weekend stay for a cost of between £1,500 and £2,500.

The NFDC enforcement action said it wanted to stop its use as a party house since the “prevailing character” of the surrounding area was large, detached homes within substantial residential plots on a rural lane in an “attractive and peaceful area”.

It went on: “The house and land is advertised online as a holiday let or ‘party house’ for groups of people up to 25 in number. The house is occupied mainly at weekends and accommodates hen parties and other large groups for short stays.

Weekend stays at the property were advertised at prices of up to £2,500

“By virtue of the nature of the use, there are high levels of noise and disturbance caused by large numbers of people, use of loud music, talking/shouting/laughing and other behaviour associated with party activities.

“As a result the unauthorised use is having a serious and detrimental impact on the level of the amenity that the neighbouring properties can reasonably expect to enjoy by reason of noise and disturbance.”

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