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Forbidden Corner faces enforcement notice

Bainbridge, 8 August, 2017

An enforcement notice is to be served on the owners of the Forbidden Corner visitor attraction near Leyburn, requiring them to demolish a prominent ‘castle folly’ that has been built without planning permission.

Members of the Planning Committee of the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority (YDNPA) approved the action, after receiving a report from officers which said that the nearly 10-metre high folly had introduced an unacceptable element of pastiche development into Coverdale.

“The Forbidden Corner is a very welcome success story, which makes a significant positive contribution to the local economy,” said Robert Heseltine, the YDNPA’s Member Champion for Development Management.

“But it cannot be right to build a large castle folly, visible for miles around, in an historic and culturally important landscape, without even bothering to seek planning permission.”

The YDNPA was told about the new folly, which lies within the Forbidden Corner gardens at Tupgill Park, in March this year.  Building work ceased with the gatehouse part of the folly at a height of about 7 metres above the surface of a wall-fronted walkway, a total of 9.5 metres above the deer park.

A retrospective application for planning permission was submitted on 1 June.  It was withdrawn on 28 July, following a decision by YDNPA officers to recommend that Planning Committee refuse permission.   Officers concluded that the folly would introduce an inauthentic, pastiche building of significant scale and prominence into a nationally important, protected landscape.

The enforcement notice, once served, will require the demolition and removal of the castle folly and the restoration of the site to its previous condition within three months.

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