A PLANNING application has been submitted to Powys County Council (PCC) to turn a welfare cabin at controversial development, Mellowcroft, into a home.

Agent Simon Smith of En-Plan explained that his client, Edward (Eddie) McIntosh, wants to convert the cabin near Llandegley into a “rural enterprise dwelling”.

Mr Smith said: “The business farms approximately 3.61 hectares of land, operating a mixed farming enterprise of community allotments, honey and silver birch sap production and the keeping of livestock.

“Mr McIntosh also enjoys grazing rights on the moors to the rear of his property.

“To help ensure the viability of the farming business for future generations this application looks to augment the agricultural use with a rural enterprise dwelling that will assist in the retention and development of the existing agricultural use.”

Mr Smith continued: “It is our view that the proposed development complies fully with the policies in Planning Policy Wales (PPW).

“The proposed development makes a sustainable contribution to Powys’ rural economy and farming community, augmenting a well established agricultural business, allowing it to react to turbulence in the commodities and meat markets and remain viable for future generations.

“There will be no significant negative environmental impact associated with the proposed development.”

The agent goes on to outline the tests set out under TAN 6 (Technical Advice Note):

  • Out of hours on-site as pigs farrow twice yearly;
  • Daily tending of pigs and bees;
  • Travelling to and from the farm would be unsustainable;
  • The equipment used, particularly the silver birch sap production equipment, is expensive so the on-site residence is required to provide security and to ensure that the equipment is appropriately insured.

Mr Smith points out that the site was broken into on January 7, 2019, and the applicant’s horsebox was vandalised.

At a PCC planning committee meeting in July, Mr McIntosh received retrospective planning permission for five structures for agricultural purposes including the welfare cabin.

In February this year at Merthyr Tydfil Crown Court Eddie McIntosh was found guilty of 18 charges of breaking planning laws by failing to comply with planning enforcement notices served on him by PCC.

He was fined £750 to be paid within 12 months or face 28 days in prison.

He was also given a 12-month conditional discharge on three of the charges, relating to a motor home, a shed and the tree house which had been moved or mostly demolished, but hadn’t at the end of an enforcement period in October 2016.

The buildings were supposed to be knocked down.

It has cost PCC more than £60,000 taking legal and enforcement action against Mr McIntosh.