A FAMILY battling council planners over a garden fence has agreed to remove it after being threatened with court action.

Annette and Kamal Khan have lived in Hawfinch Road, Layer-de-la-Haye, since 1990.

Last summer they put up a six-foot panel fence along the land boundary in their back garden.

However, the council received a complaint from a neighbour and told the couple they need to take the fence down as it was too high.

After the family initially refused to comply, they were summoned to court.

But the couple’s son Trey Khan said they had now decided to take the fence down, despite disagreeing with the decision.

He said the court summons had left his parents, who are in their 70s, stressed and upset.

“There will be no security and anyone could just walk into the property,” he said.

“When we said about it to the council they just said it was not their business.

“I will fight to the death for my parents and I will do whatever I can to make it right.”

Mr Khan said he would be pursuing other legal avenues as a number of other properties in the road had similar fences.

A spokesman for Colchester Council said it had a duty to step in.

He said: “We are pleased Mr and Mrs Khan have decided to comply with the enforcement notice, which was also upheld by the independent planning inspectorate, and that they will now remove the fence.

“Where concerns are raised by members of the public, the council has a clear duty to investigate them.

“Whilst we tried to work with Mr and Mrs Khan throughout this case, we also had a duty to resolve the matter in the wider public interest.”