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David Diprose, Televillage resident
"When I bought my home I did expect the fibre optic network to be delivered farily quickly"
 real 28k

Wednesday, 25 October, 2000, 11:47 GMT 12:47 UK
Televillage goes bust
Copyright: Acorn Televillages
Acorn Televillages: Award-winning development
A high-tech scheme at a town in Wales designed to cater for people who work from home has run out of money.

On the pioneering 39-home development in Crickhowell, Powys, 13 houses have remained unsold.

Copyright: Acorn Televillages
Interior of Acorn Televillage home
The homes were designed to come wired for the information super-highway, but the 26 families who have already moved in are still waiting to be connected.

Now, the backers, Triodos Bank, have called in receivers Grant Thornton amid recriminations from the scheme founders, Acorn Televillages.

Showcase

Described as the first televillage in the world when first proposed 10 years ago, the Crickhowell scheme was intended to be a showcase of 21st century living.

Acorn Televillages won an award for innovation last year from the Royal Town Planning Institute.

It was expected to be at the forefront of a revolution in the way people lived and worked.

Triodos says there have been problems with cost overruns.

But the bank says it is still hopeful that the project can be completed.

Acorn managing director Ashley Dobbs said: "It took 12 years to get the idea off the ground.

"Today, there are two-million teleworkers in the UK.

"That has been predicted to rise to four-million in the next couple of years.

"Ultimately, it will be the most popular form of living and very much the way of the future."

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