Boatyard owner’s cabin application is rejected again

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A BOATYARD owner has spoken of his frustration as councillors have rejected an application for caravans on his site for the second time.

Tim Hiscock owns Eastlands Boatyard on the River Hamble at Swanwick. He wanted to turn a piece of land on his site into a space for eight caravans, in a project costing £1m.

Mr Hiscock said that although technically called caravans, the mobile homes are clad with wood and cost around £75,000 each.

The plans were rejected by Fareham Borough Council despite Mr Hiscock’s amendments to make the site smaller and less visible by planting more shrubbery.

Mr Hiscock said: ‘Things at the boatyard are financially not as good as they were and I wanted to diversify.

‘There is a big space of empty land and I thought that we could put these cabins on the site and bring some money in, and then in turn to help the local community.

‘I thought it was a good idea. They don’t seem to understand what I am trying to do.’

Mr Hiscock said that he wanted to create a space whereby families could stay self-catering for a week and participate in sports on the River Hamble.

He said that this type of self-catering holiday, where families can bring pets and their own equipment, is not catered for in the local area.

He acknowledged that there are bed and breakfasts nearby, including recently-refurbished pub The Navigator.

Ward councillor David Swanbrow said: ‘This development is unnecessary as there is suitable accommodation nearby.

‘It is against our planning policy and against our core strategy. We have been very careful not to allow building in this area to protect the countryside. That’s one of the reasons we allowed the new community north of Fareham, to protect the countryside in this area.’

Mr Hiscock will now look at appealing the decision as he said he has invested too much money not to.

Ward councillor Sean Woodward said: ‘I’d advise Mr Hiscock to seek the opinions of the council officers before appealing to see if there is some way of working out an acceptable agreement.

‘This is a development in a very sensitive area.’