A new takeaway air vent is upsetting residents who claim it is blowing the smell of “grease and fat” towards their homes.
Householders in Rugby Place in Brighton say Whitehawk Chicken and Rib’s air filter is pointed directly into their back gardens instead of straight up towards the sky.
Resident Kevin Milner, 51, said he hasn’t been able to open the back windows of his house since the shop opened in June last year because it stank of “hot, damaged fats” from 11am to 11pm.
Mr Milner, pictured right, said: “You can’t tell it’s chicken. It’s just disgusting. It’s fumes. Hot, horrible and smoky. We have a chip shop, Chinese and a kebab place that have chimneys which go over the houses and disperse away. We never smell chips.
“It should be pointing away from the residential properties but they are maintaining they were told it should pump into the gardens. The council told us to keep a stench-diary but this isn’t shop-thy-neighbour.”
Thiva Vijey, the shop’s owner, said council planning chiefs have given the air vent the all-clear after two separate visits.
Mr Vijey said: “We had to make alterations when we first opened last year and I spent money on a carbon filter which reduces this kind of problem.
“But planning officers came in and checked it and said it was ok.
“If I am asked to change it I will but I don’t want to get in trouble changing the vent without planning permission first from the council.
“I think one of the residents complained because she is a vegetarian.
“If the council let me change it without planning permission I will do my best.” A spokesman from Brighton and Hove City Council said town hall officials needed to witness an incident three times from the relevant home or garden in order to take legal action.
He said: “A complaint was made about this property last year and we told the complainant that they need to inform us when it’s occurring so that we can witness it and assess if action can be taken - but no one followed that up.
He added: “In terms of planning regulations, we will be happy to investigate anything drawn to our attention.
“The planning FAQs and the necessary complaint form can be found at www.brighton-hove.gov.uk/content/planning/planning-enforcement.”