RESIDENTS of a gated park home site in Christchurch have still not secured full permission for their properties.

Tall Trees park and lodges off Matchams Lane have been embroiled in a planning and legal saga with Christchurch Borough Council for some time.

As reported by the Daily Echo last March, residents celebrated after threats of potential eviction were lifted by the local authority, which had previously launched enforcement action.

This was followed by a certificate of lawfulness for the stationing of caravans for holiday or residential use being approved by Christchurch.

However, it subsequently came to light that the owners of Tall Trees, Royale Parks, had not included the whole site in this application, which stalled residents from formally obtaining residential status.

Until this is secured, some people face charges at the holiday park rate rather than the significantly lower residential fee.

Royale Parks put forward an application for the remaining area of the site, on the north section which borders Aviary Lodge and Bostwick Farm, in November last year but this was refused by council planners.

A decision notice by Christchurch head of planning Jane Lynch said: “The council is not satisfied that the application demonstrates in law and by evidence that a permanent residential use of the whole of the application site would be lawful on this occasion.”

Since then, Royale Parks submitted a fresh bid for the certificate of lawful use, which is still being considered by the local authority.

This process has prolonged the process for residents.

A trading standards investigation into alleged misselling was closed by Dorset County Council last year after Christchurch ceased enforcement action.

Christchurch MP Sir Christopher Chope said he had a lot of sympathy for those at Tall Trees who had been left waiting until the council reaches a decision.

“It is all very complicated and people are still being charged ground rents,” said Sir Christopher. “The planning issue has not been addressed for everybody and it is a real problem for residents because they are concerned about the situation.”