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Time extension needed for new building at Royal Welsh Showground in Llanelwedd

Royal Welsh Showground (Pic: Julian Osley, Creative Commons)

MORE time is needed to allow a new building at the Royal Welsh Showground in Llanelwedd to be built.

The National Sheep Association (NSA) have lodged a section 73 planning application with Powys County Council in a bid to be given five more years to build a replacement building.

The current National Sheep Association Building at the Royal Welsh Showground in Llanelwedd (Pic: Powys County Council planning documents)

The association want to change condition number one which was attached to the planning approval they received from Powys planners in November 2019.

The current building is next to the sheep shearing pavilion in the showground complex.

Planning agent Gerallt Davies of Roger Parry and partners said: “The deadline to make a technical start will be November this year if not extended.

“The NSA wishes to replace 1,722 square meters of the existing building with a new, more durable, galvanized steel portal frame building.

“It will sit on exactly the same footprint as the present building.

“The main issue to consider is whether or not the circumstances have changed from the time planning permission was originally granted, so that an extension of the time limit on the permission is now unacceptable.”

Mr Davies explained that when the original application had been made in 2019 there was a “degree of certainty” around the financial and economic climate.

But things soon changed when the Covid-19 pandemic struck and following on its coattails the war in Ukraine and the ensuing cost of living crisis.

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Mr Davies said: “The affect made it difficult for the applicant to proceed with the development as everything was so uncertain.

“However, now the financial climate is settling, the applicants are looking to push forward with the development.”

Mr Davies explained that a “technical start” on the development could be made to keep the current planning permission “alive.”

But he believes making a start and not finishing the project would be “detrimental” to the showground in general.

Mr Davies said: “The rationale behind this request is reasonable, and I do not consider that there has been any material change in circumstances that would require the local planning authority to take a different view on the proposal as that taken on the original permission.”

Documents lodged with the original application in 2019 explained that the current timber building is: “nearing the end of its useful life.”

They said: “The present building has proved very successful over the years for exhibiting the many sheep breeds and the vision is to retain all the benefits of the existing building in a more durable form in keeping with the more up to date buildings adjoining it.”

A decision on the time extension is expected by August 8.