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Off-grid glampsite plans refused by council over ‘unacceptable impact’

PUBLISHED: 14:26 07 October 2020 | UPDATED: 14:26 07 October 2020

A Broads glampsite owner could be forced to demolish sleeping cabins built without planning permission. Pictured, Ranworth Broad. Photo: Mike Page

A Broads glampsite owner could be forced to demolish sleeping cabins built without planning permission. Pictured, Ranworth Broad. Photo: Mike Page

Mike Page

Proposals for an “eco-friendly” glampsite have been rejected by a council due to “unacceptable impact” on nearby properties.

Plans to build the “off-grid” site at land east of The Hill in Ranworth were submitted to Broadland Council earlier this year.

Owner Spencer Blyth said the site would feature wooden huts and toilet and shower facilities, built with “sustainable materials” and operating seasonally.

A planning statement for the site said owners wanted to provide an “off-the-grid, eco-friendly glamping site near the Norfolk Broads”, for “environmentally conscious couples and individuals looking low-budget staycations”.

But planning officers recommended the plans be rejected and suggested the council would “take enforcement action” if the scheme were refused.

READ MORE: Plans for eco-friendly glampsite in Ranworth could be refused by council

Speaking a meeting of the council’s planning committee, held on Wednesday, October 7, planning officer Nigel Harriss told the committee: “The proposals have an unacceptable impact on a neighbouring property, in terms of potential overlooking from the proposed viewing platform.”

He said the plans should be refused but that enforcement action over a fence and a storage shed which had been installed would be automatic.

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“The officers’ recommendation is to refuse and to take enforcement action,” he added.

“The assistant director does have delegated authority to exercise the council’s functions relating to planning enforcement.

“If it is resolved to refuse this application the resolution is not required to include or to take enforcement action. This action would follow if this application is refused in order to remedy harm caused by partial implementation of the development that has already been carried out.”

READ MORE: Luxury glamping site planned for Norfolk village

A report ahead of the meeting stated: “Some fencing and gate around the entrance has also been installed but is different to what is proposed on submitted drawings.”

Woodbastwick Parish Council, which objected to the plans, said it had reported work taking place at the site in February, which they said was “inappropriate given planning permission is only now being applied for.”

But Mr Blyth said the fence was permitted development.

Co-owner Abbie McAllister added: “We have to store stuff as we don’t live near the site. The council are aware of that.”

Councillors voted unanimously to reject the proposals.

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