A BOATYARD owner is celebrating after his wooden cabin plan has been given the green light at an appeal.
Tim Hiscock, owner of Eastlands Boatyard on the River Hamble at Swanwick, wanted to turn a piece of land on his site into a space for eight wooden-clad caravans, in a project costing £1m.
His application went before Fareham Borough Council earlier this year and was rejected by councillors because of concerns over its size and building in the countryside.
Mr Hiscock resubmitted revised plans for a smaller site with more shrubbery in March, which were rejected by councillors for a second time.
Upset by the decision, Mr Hiscock appealed and it went to an independent inspector, who gave the green light to the plans.
Mr Hiscock said: ‘We have won our appeal on all counts. I’m so relieved – my wife is not going to divorce me because I’ve not wasted all that money on architects and pursuing this dream.’
Due to the recession, the boatyard had been struggling financially and Mr Hiscock thought the ideal way to expand his business would be to diversify and create a space where families could stay self-catering for a week and take part in sports on the River Hamble
Mr Hiscock will now set about buying the mobile homes, which cost around £75,000 each, and preparing the site.
He said: ‘It’s come a bit late in the year for the holiday season but I will start work on the outbuilding and the access road, which I will do myself and then I will look to find the funding to carry on after that.’
Ward Cllr David Swanbrow said the development was unnecessary and against core strategy.
Ward councillor Sean Woodward said: ‘I have read the appeal decision carefully and I find it surprising because there is a policy of what is acceptable in the countryside.
‘The inspector said that because the appeal does not specifically exclude mobile homes, then they are allowed.
‘I will be getting a solicitor to look at the decision as there could be implications elsewhere in the borough.’