Eco-village blocked by planners

Council planning chiefs in Wales have turned down plans to build an eco-village because of concerns the development is not environmentally-friendly enough.

Pembrokeshire County Council’s planning committee refused the application for nine smallholdings, a community building and a seasonal campsite on the land near the village of Glandwr.

The committee raised concerns that some of the activities and structures on the site did not comply with their Low Impact Development policy and the residents may not be able to make a living without working off-site, which could generate traffic.

However, Lammas, the organisation behind the application, is still confident it can get planning permission for the project, although development will have to be delayed by several months.

Councillor Mark Edwards, vice chairman of the council’s planning committee said the application had been carefully considered before a decision was made.

He added: “It may be that Lammas will resubmit their application having taken onboard the comments contained in the report by the head of planning, David Lawrence.”

Paul Wimbush, one of the founders of Lammas, an organisation which campaigns to change planning policies and promote low impact living, said he was already working on meeting the council’s concerns.

He told edie: “We are absolutely confident we will be able to go ahead, but this has put the timetable back a bit.”

Mr Wimbush, who hopes to move to the site himself with his family, said he wanted the project to prove eco-friendly living was possible in a bid to encourage it to be more widely adopted.

He added: “This is a very deliberate attempt to take low impact development into the mainstream.

“Potentially, it is addressing three very serious issues today – one is climate change, one is affordable housing and one is rural regeneration.”

The planned development would include nine zero-carbon homes and residents would grow their own food.

Kate Martin

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