GRANADA city hall has ordered work inside the grounds of the Alhambra Palace to be stopped after it was discovered a building licence had not been granted.
The Patronato de la Alhambra, the group in charge of the management of the 14th century palace, had ordered the construction of a retaining wall in gardens below the Patio of the Sultaness area in July.
But the work was found to be illegal after a routine inspection by town planning officials on September 29 found the ayuntamiento had not given permission for the project.
Council officials ordered an immediate stop to the work and asked the electricity and water board to cut the service to the work site making further construction impossible.
A spokesman for the Patronato de la Alhambra claimed the group did not think a building licence “was necessary as important maintenance work was being carried out and not construction.”
The city hall has given the management group a period of two months to apply for the relevant documentation.
Meanwhile, police have arrested three youths for allegedly starting a fire in a shack in the woods that surround the Alhambra Palace.
Flames were spotted near the Puerta de las Granadas in the Cuesta de Gomérez area near the palace shortly after 6pm on September 28.
The fire service was called and they managed to bring the fire under control by 8pm with the aid of a helicopter and a fire engine.
Three hundred metres of scrub land was destroyed by the flames.
The youths, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, were arrested shortly after accused of attempted arson.