An application for an eco-village has been resubmitted to Pembrokeshire County Council under its new low-impact development policy that was expected to become a charter for off-grid living in the Welsh county.
The proposed communitry will run completely off-grid and is an important landmark at a time when the government is planning ten eco-towns, which are likely to be imposed on local communities instead of starting out as villages and forming over time.
Co-operative company Lammas is proposing a community comprising nine smallholdings and a hub building on 30 hectares of woodland and pasture at Glandwr near Crymych.
The test-case scheme includes straw bale and timber roundhouses and turf-roofed barns. , using spring water, hydroelectricity and fuel from biomass crops.
Under the council’s policy, each of the smallholdings will be required to run a land-based business. Enterprises include making linen shawls, breeding compost worms and supplying fruit and farm produce.
The council refused an earlier application saying it had been given insufficient detail, but this is thought to be a delaying tactic while councillors attempt to reverse the new policy. Lammas co-founder Paul Wimbush said he is confident of getting the go-ahead. ‘Looking at the policy and at our application, the two fit together without a doubt,’ he said.
The low-impact policy permits rural development as an exception to planning policy if it fulfils eight specific criteria.
It covers the county as well as the Pembrokeshire Coast national park. The Lammas proposal is the third to be submitted. So far, none have been approved.
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