"James Bond-style villa" on May Hill sparks anger
VILLAGERS fear new planning rules could be exploited to allow a "hideous James Bond-style villa" to be built at an iconic beauty spot.
Tim and Sara Nash's plans for a futuristic home on May Hill have been slammed by Daily Mail columnist and nearby resident Quentin Letts, and sparked uproar in the parish of Longhope.
"The new planning minister, Nick Boles, and his Secretary of State, Eric Pickles, gave assurances about the Green Belt," wrote Mr Letts, who lives around seven miles away in Herefordshire.
"But what about the rest of the English countryside? Places like historic May Hill, threatened by a hideous James Bond-style villa?"
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Mr and Mrs Nash's application states it is in direct response to new rules in the National Planning Policy Framework, which allow for isolated homes in the countryside if they re-use old buildings, have exceptional design or are innovative – and sensitive to the surrounding environment.
Many residents who turned out in force at Longhope Parish Council's Monday meeting believe the proposal does not accord with the new part of the framework, even though the application details many environmentally-friendly features.
Longhope Parish Council oppose the application.
A statement from Mr and Mrs Nash said: "We understand this has become a very controversial application but our intention has never been to spoil beautiful May Hill where we have lived ourselves for over seven years and where Mr Nash has visited since he was a small child, being born and raised on a farm nearby. We have always wanted to build an inspirational contemporary home in a traditional country setting. "We feel this house fulfils that and will provide a legacy."