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IDCompany / PersonClaim TitleIncident DateAddedPostsAdd commentDetails
13639Plans4udotcom . [Oxfordshire]
Total claims:1
Plans4udotcom »Dec 200812/09/20100

Company Address changed in March 2010 to the following:

14 Saffron Crescent
OX18 1LE

 Previous address: 

15 Manor Road

 UPDATE - 23th Sep 2009 - My case against was heard this morning in the Uxbridge County Court and the District Judge found Plans4udotcom in Breach of Contract, and ordered them to refund me £400 plus costs plus

 AVOID this company.  They are unprofessional and have no idea about customer service. They have a very professional looking website which gives the impression they are a professional outfit. However they are really just a one man band that goes by the name of Brendon Gilford. He came across really professional in the initial consultation, and made out that he knew all the planning officers in the local council I was dealing with, and said that they usually call him up to discuss any revisions to avoid the delays of rejecting the application.

 I should have known things were not right when he came round to show me what I believed to be the first draft of plans he had drawn up for my thoughts, and approval prior to submission. I was shocked to find out that he had already submitted the plans in their current state to the council, without me even having had a look at them, and the plans were not at all what I had described to him. I now realise that since our agreement stated that he was to be paid on submission, he had gone ahead and submitted anyway so that he could secure his cheque as soon as possible. He blagged that it was better to get the application in as soon as possible so as to avoid delays, and that the plans could be updated later at any time. Thinking this was a clever strategic move, and after discussing this with some colleagues I sent him the cheque. I then had to keep chasing him to send me the amended plans for my approval so he could submit them to the council as soon as possible. This took a long time and an uncomfortable conversation about his unprofessionalism in submitting the original plans without my approval. Amended plans were eventually sent but not until the original incorrect plans had been uploaded to the council website, and sent out to the neighbours for consultation. The whole process had kicked off with the wrong plans. 

Furthermore despite Brendon's assurance that he was in constant contact with the planners about the applications he submits, he actually did not make any attempts to speak to them at all. He made some lame excuses about not being able to get hold of the planner and leaving messages for them but not hearing back. A little concerned about this, as we were approaching the date of the decision, I decided to phone the planning officer myself, and left a message. He returned my call immediately and advised that he had not had any messages to call my architect.

 The plans were eventually rejected. My agreement with Plans4u states that the price includes revisions and resubmission until approval. I have discussed revised plans with Mr Gilford and he has e-mailed me them for my review. However each time I have questions about what he has proposed, yet when I call him to discuss what he has sent me he says he is busy and will call me back. He never returns my calls, and when I called him once again at apparently the wrong time, he joked that  I always call at the wrong moment. I suggested that if he bothered to call me back when it was more convenient then he wouldn't have to worry about me catching him at inopportune moments. I persisted and asked for a time and I would call back  - he suggested a time, and then proceeded to have his phone switched off.  I left him a voice message stating that this was getting ridiculous now, and he replied immediately with a text message stating he didn't think it was.

 It has been almost 2 months since the plans were rejected, and I am unable to get any decent amended plans from Brendon. The suggestions he comes up with clearly demonstrate that he is not as much of an expert as he claims to be - eg suggesting overcoming a bedroom window overlooking the neighbours by using frosted glass. I didn't think this was right and I called up the council to ask if this would be something they would consider and they laughed at it and said there was no way a suggestion like that would get approved, and that it was one of the basic principles of English planning law.    I also saw a reference to this in a book I bought entitled "How to Get Planning permission" which stated that generally council's will not accept obscured glass in habitable rooms such as bedrooms.

 The website boasts a fast turnaround but this seems to only be the case in order to secure  their fee. Once they have been paid, getting them to work on your case is almost impossible. I am in the process of consulting a lawyer to see what my rights are regarding suing them for the return of some, if not all of the fee I paid them. It also shocks me to see that anyone can set up in business as a planning design consultant, and there doesn't seem to be any regulatory bodies that govern them. This is why cowboys such as Brendon Gilford are able to get away with shoddy

 2009-09-23  15:37:22

UPDATE - 23th Sep 2009 - My case against Plans4udotcom was heard this morning in the Uxbridge County Court and the District Judge found Plans4udotcom in Breach of Contract, and ordered them to refund me £400 plus costs plus interest.  I always knew that I was in the right and I gave Mr Gilford ample opportunity to settle rather than go to court, yet he refused to do so. 

 However I had complete faith in the legal system to determine what was fair, and I am very happy with the outcome

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