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Thursday, 19 September, 2002, 10:37 GMT 11:37 UK
Battle lost for eco-house
The roundhouse
The roundhouse cost 3,000 to build
A three-year fight to save a Lord of the Rings style eco-house in Pembrokeshire has finally been lost.

The owner of the turf-covered roundhouse at Brithdir Mawr at Newport has had his appeal over planning permission refusal dismissed.


The dwelling house is unacceptably harmful to the character of the area

Welsh Assembly planning inspector

Tony Wrench has decided not appeal against an enforcement order to demolish the self-made building and it will have to be pulled down within the next six months.

Mr Wrench and his partner Jane Faith say they will move to Spain to build a similar dwelling.

The roundhouse, which was originally built without planning permission, was spotted by a plane carrying out a survey of the area for the national park.

Mr Wrench was ordered to pull it down by Pembrokeshire National Park but was given temporary planning permission for 18 months so he could find alternative accommodation.

That period came to an end in July and a second enforcement order was issued.

Tony Wrench
Tony Wrench: moving away

Mr Wrench had asked for an extension to the planning permission but that was also turned down.

A Welsh Assembly inspector said: "The dwelling house is unacceptably harmful to the character of the area."

The roundhouse was used as a case study by the assembly in research into low impact housing.

Mr Wrench said he is now resigned to the fate of the building.

He said: "We need places like this so that people can live and work in the countryside causing little impact.

"The reasons of the planners are not good enough.

Moving on

"The assembly says it wants a sustainable country but this proves it is not willing to take important decisions.

"Planners think sustainability has nothing to do with them."

Mr Wrench sais he was so disappointed by the decision that he and his partner will move to Europe.

He added: "I am giving up on the UK.

"Friends from Wales are already living in Spain so we will set up something to live simply and hopefully establish a similar community there."


Where I Live, South West Wales
See also:

08 Nov 00 | Wales
09 Mar 01 | UK
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