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Pembrokeshire Politics West Wales

Mobile sauna plans at Saundersfoot Harbour expected to be approved

Plans for a mobile sauna at Saundersfoot harbour have been submitted to the national park (Pic: Google Street View)

A SCHEME for a mobile sauna at a Pembrokeshire seaside village car park by a national park staff member is expected to be approved by the authority next week.

In an application before Pembrokeshire coast National Park’s development management committee meeting of June 5, Ms and Miss B and K Rees and Evans are seeking a temporary change of use of land to accommodate a mobile sauna at Saundersfoot Harbour, with planners recommended to conditionally approve the scheme.

The proposal for the off-grid wood-fired sauna, to be sited for up to two years, is being brought to the Development Management Committee as the applicant is a member of staff who works for the authority.

A supporting letter for the application says: “As local businesswomen our aim is to provide affordable outdoor sauna sessions in a beautiful location that is compliant with local town planning regulations.

“We believe the sauna would support the community of local people, and south Pembrokeshire whilst attracting people from further afield, providing an unforgettable experience that has many health benefits.”

It is proposed the sauna would be located on the edge of the harbour car park, on a section of the sea wall.

The supporting letter adds: “There has been a big growth in both cold-water swimming and saunas in the outdoor settings, with over 90 saunas of this kind now in the UK. There are already a number of people and groups who go in the sea daily in Saundersfoot. The Bluetits community (which has over 3,000 members in South Pembrokeshire alone), a male group, a Breast Cancer support group to name but a few. Saundersfoot is also famously known for cold water ‘dipping’ with the largest New Years Day swim in Wales which sees thousands of sea swimmers enter the sea, as well as Saundersfoot Triathlon.”

One third party response has been received, saying there was a lack of proper consultation on the scheme, and raising concerns including visual appearance and it not being in keeping with the existing facilities.

An officers’ report for committee members says the principle of development is considered to be acceptable, adding: “Given that the site is within a popular tourist destination, it is not considered that the change of use of land here would be of a scale that is incompatible with the surroundings, and it is not deemed that it would result in visual intrusion since it would be seen in the context of other developments on the harbour.”