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Welsh Government ‘call in’ over plans for Penstrowed holiday lodges

Penstrowed Holiday lodge - how the lodges could look

WELSH Government planning inspectors have been asked to “call in” a planning application to build 89 holiday lodges at a site between Newtown and Caersws.

This is so that the Welsh Government minister for Climate Change, Julie James MS can consider taking charge of the decision making process.

In December it emerged that Graham Grigg of GF Grigg had lodged an application with Powys County Council to build 89 holiday lodges, informal recreation area, a fishing pond and two other ponds, games room and additional recreation facilities at Penstrowed Quarry.

Penstrowed Quarry is the name given to the site of his construction firm, which is on the flank of Maesmawr hill, Penstrowed near the A489 main road.

Quarrying at the site ended in 1984.

Objections were made against the proposal by the Montgomeryshire branch of the Campaign for the Protection of Rural Wales (CPRW) who had also wanted the application to be “called in” and decided by the council’s Planning committee.

The objection was criticised by Mr Grigg’s planning agent, Jonathan Lambe.

The Welsh Government has now issued a holding direction to Powys County Council for the application.

Welsh Government head of planning casework, Hywel Butts said: “The Welsh ministers have been asked to call in the application for their own determination.

“I direct Powys County Council, not to grant planning permission for the development without the prior authorisation of the Welsh ministers.

“I issue this direction to enable further consideration to be given to whether or not the application should be referred to the Welsh ministers for their determination.

“The direction only prevents your authority from granting planning permission; it does not prevent it from continuing to process or consult on the application.”

Mr Butts explains that the council could refuse the application “if they so wish”.

Mr Grigg said that he is “aware” of the call in request to the Welsh Government.

In documents supporting the proposal, Mr Lambe said: “This proposal is to replace the intensive industrial and construction activities with 89 bespoke five star holiday lodges aimed at the over 50s.

“The site is set in the developed mature woodland expanded tree belts and mature tree cover.”

Mr Lambe claims the proposal could bring in up to £2.28 million to the local economy if the accommodation is used for 30 weeks a year.

He added that the scheme would: “retain employment and create additional job opportunities.”

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