In 2005 Merton Council received a complaint regarding the building works at the Three Kings Public House.
The Local Government Ombudsman investigated the matter in 2007 and ruled that maladminstration had occurred. This was as a result of the council’s failure to promptly investigate noise nuisance caused by an unauthorised metal staircase and works to convert the public house into flats.
As a result the council has been required to review its handling of complaints. A new system has been put in place to improve the way complaints are handled.
The new system includes close liaison between planning and environmental health officers. There are also more planning enforcement officers to carry out site inspections and to ensure that developments are built in accordance with approved plans.
Cabinet Member for Housing and Regeneration, Councillor Diane Neil Mills said:
“Rulings such as these remind us that we are still learning. What we learn from our mistakes allows us to better our services for our residents and ensure we are putting them first.”