The Home Office has said it must halt all work at the former RAF base which will house migrants

A county council has banned the Home Office from carrying out any work to convert a former RAF base into a migrant accommodation site, accusing it of carrying out unassessed work.

West Lindsey District Council has issued an enforcement notice and a cease and desist notice to the Home Office, meaning all work must stop at RAF Scampton.

The former airbase, in Lincolnshire, is to be used to house 2,000 asylum seekers, but there has been resistance to the move.

The notices mean the Home Office must stop using the site as accommodation for asylum seekers, stop work related to the Portakabins, stop all intervention work and restore the site to its original state.

Sally Grindrod-Smith, director of regeneration and communities planning at the council, said it was “clear” from the work taking place on the site that the Home Office intended to use the site for more than 12 months.

He said: “On the site visit last week, officers observed significant works on site which were not considered as part of the Home Office audit request for the environmental impact assessment.

“This means that the impact of the development has not been properly assessed.

“Emergency development rights … are available to the government only in the event of a genuine emergency, which has not been demonstrated and where there is an adverse environmental impact assessment review decision.

“Furthermore, it is clear from the scale of the work on site that this development is not limited to a temporary 12-month period.”

The move follows an interim stop notice issued to the Home Office on September 8, in relation to listed buildings and archeology at the site, after the council ruled there had been a breach of planning controls.

The new notices were issued after a further visit on September 14 revealed what the council deemed to be further breaches.

It is an offense to fail to comply with a stop notice which together with an enforcement notice has been issued under sections 172 and 183 of the Planning and Zoning Act 1990.

Councilor Trevor Young, leader of the council, said: “From the moment the decision was made to use RAF Scampton as an asylum accommodation centre, the council was clear that it was not a suitable site for this purpose.

“Using the site for asylum accommodation puts the £300m investment proposal at risk.

“It is incredibly disappointing that despite repeated assurances that the site would be safe, legal and compliant, the Home Office has failed to secure the appropriate planning permission or adequately assess the impact of its proposals.

“It is an offense to breach a stop notice and I urge the Home Office to stop all work under this legal action.”

On Tuesday, Gainsborough MP Sir Edward Leigh threatened to call for a formal review at the Home Office for “misuse of public money” over its plans for the former airbase, claiming the department was “fudging” evidence to show that the design was value for money.

RAF Scampton was formerly home to the famous 617 Squadron, which took part in the Dambuster raid in World War Two, and the Red Arrows.

The council said it expected the site to be fully operational as a migrant shelter by December this year.

The authority lost a bid for an injunction in May to stop the move, but in July was given the green light to appeal to the High Court.

The High Court date has now been confirmed for the judicial review, which will take place on 31 October and 1 November.

The Home Office has been approached for comment.