Bovingdon eco home plans of RES CEO, Dr Ian Mays, criticised for being on Green Belt

Watford Observer: Mock-up of what the new eco home will look like from above/ Mock-up of what the new eco home will look like from above/

A green technology company CEO's plans for an eco house in Bovingdon have been criticised for being on the Green Belt.

A revised scheme to develop an eco house in Flaunden Lane, Bovingdon has prompted objections and concern people living nearby about the destruction of protected land.

Dr Ian Mays, who currently lives in Chipperfield and works in renewable energy as chief executive of Kings Langley-based RES, has submitted an application to develop a zero-carbon home on land in Ten Oaks Farm.

Matt Cannon, whose house neighbours the site, said: "Although the council is giving consideration to the environmental credentials of the house, the proposal as submitted would set an alarming precedent for large new houses on Green Belt farm land and where the presumption exists against "inappropriate development" as reaffirmed in the newly published National Planning Policy Framework in March 2012."

He added: "This application goes against Local and National Policy protecting Green Belt, but is pushed forward by Dr. Mays based on claimed eco credentials which are partly based on support provided by RES."

The plans will involve the demolition of a double storey seven bedroom dwelling, garage and out buildings and the erection of a new five bedroom dwelling with a one bedroom annex and external outbuildings, including a garage.

Patrick Kalverboer, who also neighbours the site, said: "Although I would not see the house from my own property, the proposal clearly flaunts the protection of Green Belt farmland and is therefore against both National Policy and the Local Plan Policy which limits the size of replacement dwellings."

Mr Cannon has attempted to make contact with Dacorum Borough Council planning officers but he said "they are refusing to speak to us".

He said: "Only one has had the decency to respond."

Mr Cannon spoke to Dr Mays about the development and said Dr Mays was "very forthright that he wouldn’t be willing to compromise at all".

Martin Leay, an Environmental Planning Consultant, said: "The proposal is to site the replacement dwelling in open farm land behind the residential curtilage of the existing property and would significantly reduce the openness of the Green Belt.

"As such the proposal is wholly contrary to policy and nor is there any basis for swapping a residential plot with a site on open, Green Belt farm land."

Comments (15)

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4:58pm Mon 16 Dec 13

Nascot Eye says...

This is an extremely one sided report. It begs all sorts of questions
- Did the journalist not contact Dr Mays for his side of the story?
- Did the journalist contact the Council ?
- If not, how can the Observer claim to be reporting objectively?
As for the comments of those interviewed, if this application is for a house in the Green belt, then surely so are the houses of Messrs, Cannon & Kalverboer? How do they justify living where they do?

There is a distinct whiff of NIMBY-ism about all this.
This is an extremely one sided report. It begs all sorts of questions - Did the journalist not contact Dr Mays for his side of the story? - Did the journalist contact the Council ? - If not, how can the Observer claim to be reporting objectively? As for the comments of those interviewed, if this application is for a house in the Green belt, then surely so are the houses of Messrs, Cannon & Kalverboer? How do they justify living where they do? There is a distinct whiff of NIMBY-ism about all this. Nascot Eye
  • Score: 4

6:09pm Mon 16 Dec 13

Phil Cox (UKIP) says...

Protection of the Green Belt is something I believe passionately in.

This fellow is just trying it on and deserves to get nowhere, at least under current laws.

Word has it that the Conservatives and Labour are planning to water down protection and up development over the countryside. Good reasons not to vote for either of them.
Protection of the Green Belt is something I believe passionately in. This fellow is just trying it on and deserves to get nowhere, at least under current laws. Word has it that the Conservatives and Labour are planning to water down protection and up development over the countryside. Good reasons not to vote for either of them. Phil Cox (UKIP)
  • Score: -3

6:31pm Mon 16 Dec 13

not a regular says...

Phil Cox (UKIP) wrote:
Protection of the Green Belt is something I believe passionately in.

This fellow is just trying it on and deserves to get nowhere, at least under current laws.

Word has it that the Conservatives and Labour are planning to water down protection and up development over the countryside. Good reasons not to vote for either of them.
Good reasons to vote for them. Protection of some fields so that old people can walk their dogs is no reason to prevent development of key housing and infrastructure projects.
[quote][p][bold]Phil Cox (UKIP)[/bold] wrote: Protection of the Green Belt is something I believe passionately in. This fellow is just trying it on and deserves to get nowhere, at least under current laws. Word has it that the Conservatives and Labour are planning to water down protection and up development over the countryside. Good reasons not to vote for either of them.[/p][/quote]Good reasons to vote for them. Protection of some fields so that old people can walk their dogs is no reason to prevent development of key housing and infrastructure projects. not a regular
  • Score: 0

10:36am Tue 17 Dec 13

garston tony says...

I do wonder at the objection of 'people near by' to the 'destruction 'of green belt land when they themselves live in properties that 'destroyed' such land when they were built
I do wonder at the objection of 'people near by' to the 'destruction 'of green belt land when they themselves live in properties that 'destroyed' such land when they were built garston tony
  • Score: 2

11:08am Tue 17 Dec 13

Phil Cox (UKIP) says...

garston tony wrote:
I do wonder at the objection of 'people near by' to the 'destruction 'of green belt land when they themselves live in properties that 'destroyed' such land when they were built
How far do we go back on an argument like that one? The Romans? Celts?
[quote][p][bold]garston tony[/bold] wrote: I do wonder at the objection of 'people near by' to the 'destruction 'of green belt land when they themselves live in properties that 'destroyed' such land when they were built[/p][/quote]How far do we go back on an argument like that one? The Romans? Celts? Phil Cox (UKIP)
  • Score: 0

12:08pm Tue 17 Dec 13

not a regular says...

Phil Cox (UKIP) wrote:
garston tony wrote: I do wonder at the objection of 'people near by' to the 'destruction 'of green belt land when they themselves live in properties that 'destroyed' such land when they were built
How far do we go back on an argument like that one? The Romans? Celts?
We shouldn't have the argument in the first place. It's saying, "I'm allowed to live here but you're not". You mention about the green space within towns on the article about the new road to be built, if the green belt, TCPA and general NIMBY-ism weren't squeezing London's population into too small a space then we would be able to have more parks in urban areas. You can't have it both ways.

At the end of the day infrastructure and buildings cost money to construct and maintain. Either we build for the sake of it (unprofitable) or we build out of necessity (money well spent). Organic growth rather than stunted, focused growth would allow better living standards, not £300k for a two bed flat next to the ring road and developers only providing the bare-minimum green space.
[quote][p][bold]Phil Cox (UKIP)[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]garston tony[/bold] wrote: I do wonder at the objection of 'people near by' to the 'destruction 'of green belt land when they themselves live in properties that 'destroyed' such land when they were built[/p][/quote]How far do we go back on an argument like that one? The Romans? Celts?[/p][/quote]We shouldn't have the argument in the first place. It's saying, "I'm allowed to live here but you're not". You mention about the green space within towns on the article about the new road to be built, if the green belt, TCPA and general NIMBY-ism weren't squeezing London's population into too small a space then we would be able to have more parks in urban areas. You can't have it both ways. At the end of the day infrastructure and buildings cost money to construct and maintain. Either we build for the sake of it (unprofitable) or we build out of necessity (money well spent). Organic growth rather than stunted, focused growth would allow better living standards, not £300k for a two bed flat next to the ring road and developers only providing the bare-minimum green space. not a regular
  • Score: 0

1:09pm Tue 17 Dec 13

Phil Cox (UKIP) says...

NIMBY.

Isn't that one of those words that used to be guaranteed to rubbish someone else's arguments without needing to consider the facts?

Please do not resort to name calling. It reflects badly on you.

Now, to the facts.

If we did not have an open-door immigration policy there would be fewer people in the UK seeking housing. We would therefore need less housing than otherwise. The only way to control immigration is to leave the EU, and only UKIP offer that option.

You argument about more urban parks does not stack up. You can't create them where there is already development. Once green space is lost, it is lost forever.

As for house prices, they are out of control and government policy and banks are trying their best to keep them high. Left purely to the market, they would slide until they became affordable in their own right without artificial stimulations from government and banks.

I prefer green to grey when I am looking at landscapes. Let's keep what little green we have left in built-up areas. It makes a place worth living in.
NIMBY. Isn't that one of those words that used to be guaranteed to rubbish someone else's arguments without needing to consider the facts? Please do not resort to name calling. It reflects badly on you. Now, to the facts. If we did not have an open-door immigration policy there would be fewer people in the UK seeking housing. We would therefore need less housing than otherwise. The only way to control immigration is to leave the EU, and only UKIP offer that option. You argument about more urban parks does not stack up. You can't create them where there is already development. Once green space is lost, it is lost forever. As for house prices, they are out of control and government policy and banks are trying their best to keep them high. Left purely to the market, they would slide until they became affordable in their own right without artificial stimulations from government and banks. I prefer green to grey when I am looking at landscapes. Let's keep what little green we have left in built-up areas. It makes a place worth living in. Phil Cox (UKIP)
  • Score: 0

3:18pm Tue 17 Dec 13

not a regular says...

Phil Cox (UKIP) wrote:
NIMBY. Isn't that one of those words that used to be guaranteed to rubbish someone else's arguments without needing to consider the facts? Please do not resort to name calling. It reflects badly on you. Now, to the facts. If we did not have an open-door immigration policy there would be fewer people in the UK seeking housing. We would therefore need less housing than otherwise. The only way to control immigration is to leave the EU, and only UKIP offer that option. You argument about more urban parks does not stack up. You can't create them where there is already development. Once green space is lost, it is lost forever. As for house prices, they are out of control and government policy and banks are trying their best to keep them high. Left purely to the market, they would slide until they became affordable in their own right without artificial stimulations from government and banks. I prefer green to grey when I am looking at landscapes. Let's keep what little green we have left in built-up areas. It makes a place worth living in.
There was no name calling, there was the term "general NIMBY-ism". As in, people telling other people that they are not allowed to do something that they do themselves. I could use hypocrisy if you'd prefer.

I wholeheartedly agree with you regarding open door immigration and its links to overpopulation. But you have to consider why people want to come here at all, which is mostly down to the lax restrictions on welfare. We don't need to leave the EU to restrict welfare if we are consistent with our approach (e.g. a contribution based system), we could lower the minimum wage so as not to price ourselves out of a job. I'm not saying we should remain in the EU, I'm just saying it's not as black and white as you're making out.

I'm also not saying that we can retrofit green spaces on brownfield sites. I'm saying that due to the restrictive planning laws in this country, and the protection of the green belt, the last 66 years have meant that construction has taken place within existing green spaces within cities rather than allowing organic growth outside of the city boundaries. A piece of British legislation that you apparently want to allow to continue. There are three options: no growth, growth outside of a city or growth inside a city.

I'm also in agreement regarding government stimuli to ensure high house prices, funnily enough, but again it's not black and white. The planning laws have contributed to the house price increase as well.

I want parks, I want rivers and canals, I want woodland in my town, certainly. I want less cars and I want to promote walking and cycling. I'm certainly with you on that one. But at the end of the day this is what you politicians don't tend to see. You all claim the way to run a government is black and white, but in actual fact as I've just pointed out above, the Labour welfare state, the Tory planning acts and market interference, the UKIP desire to leave the EU despite its benefits and the Lib Dems desire to build possibly too much infrastructure, they all have their benefits and they all have their disadvantages but you're all too stubborn to find a balanced middle ground and as a result we end up with an ever changing direction of which way the country is heading.
[quote][p][bold]Phil Cox (UKIP)[/bold] wrote: NIMBY. Isn't that one of those words that used to be guaranteed to rubbish someone else's arguments without needing to consider the facts? Please do not resort to name calling. It reflects badly on you. Now, to the facts. If we did not have an open-door immigration policy there would be fewer people in the UK seeking housing. We would therefore need less housing than otherwise. The only way to control immigration is to leave the EU, and only UKIP offer that option. You argument about more urban parks does not stack up. You can't create them where there is already development. Once green space is lost, it is lost forever. As for house prices, they are out of control and government policy and banks are trying their best to keep them high. Left purely to the market, they would slide until they became affordable in their own right without artificial stimulations from government and banks. I prefer green to grey when I am looking at landscapes. Let's keep what little green we have left in built-up areas. It makes a place worth living in.[/p][/quote]There was no name calling, there was the term "general NIMBY-ism". As in, people telling other people that they are not allowed to do something that they do themselves. I could use hypocrisy if you'd prefer. I wholeheartedly agree with you regarding open door immigration and its links to overpopulation. But you have to consider why people want to come here at all, which is mostly down to the lax restrictions on welfare. We don't need to leave the EU to restrict welfare if we are consistent with our approach (e.g. a contribution based system), we could lower the minimum wage so as not to price ourselves out of a job. I'm not saying we should remain in the EU, I'm just saying it's not as black and white as you're making out. I'm also not saying that we can retrofit green spaces on brownfield sites. I'm saying that due to the restrictive planning laws in this country, and the protection of the green belt, the last 66 years have meant that construction has taken place within existing green spaces within cities rather than allowing organic growth outside of the city boundaries. A piece of British legislation that you apparently want to allow to continue. There are three options: no growth, growth outside of a city or growth inside a city. I'm also in agreement regarding government stimuli to ensure high house prices, funnily enough, but again it's not black and white. The planning laws have contributed to the house price increase as well. I want parks, I want rivers and canals, I want woodland in my town, certainly. I want less cars and I want to promote walking and cycling. I'm certainly with you on that one. But at the end of the day this is what you politicians don't tend to see. You all claim the way to run a government is black and white, but in actual fact as I've just pointed out above, the Labour welfare state, the Tory planning acts and market interference, the UKIP desire to leave the EU despite its benefits and the Lib Dems desire to build possibly too much infrastructure, they all have their benefits and they all have their disadvantages but you're all too stubborn to find a balanced middle ground and as a result we end up with an ever changing direction of which way the country is heading. not a regular
  • Score: 1

3:22pm Tue 17 Dec 13

not a regular says...

Oh and for what it's worth, I'm voting UKIP. You guys have an open goal to become something different to the dross we've had for the last 30 years, something that actually takes proper economics and common sense into running a country, rather than a red and blue p*ssing contest in which the current government just tries to leave the next one in the lurch.

Please, just be open minded and don't be afraid to meet your opposition half way.
Oh and for what it's worth, I'm voting UKIP. You guys have an open goal to become something different to the dross we've had for the last 30 years, something that actually takes proper economics and common sense into running a country, rather than a red and blue p*ssing contest in which the current government just tries to leave the next one in the lurch. Please, just be open minded and don't be afraid to meet your opposition half way. not a regular
  • Score: 1

3:41pm Tue 17 Dec 13

Phil Cox (UKIP) says...

Hypocracy is a good descriptive word without the inherent insult so often hidden in the term NIMBY. I appreciate you had meant it in good faith in the hypocracy sense.

In general I understand and agree with most of what you say, including about politicians both locally and nationally. I think UKIP recognises this also. I am however 100% for leaving the EU, trading with it, and the rest of the world, as an independent nation and replacing whatever is beneficial from the EU (not much) with bi and multi-lateral agreements and treaties with European states or even the EU if it still exists. We will however be free of EU interference in our lives which would be a welcome change for many, probably the majority.

Nick Clegg wouldn't agree with me, but I think that just strengthens my argument all the more.
Hypocracy is a good descriptive word without the inherent insult so often hidden in the term NIMBY. I appreciate you had meant it in good faith in the hypocracy sense. In general I understand and agree with most of what you say, including about politicians both locally and nationally. I think UKIP recognises this also. I am however 100% for leaving the EU, trading with it, and the rest of the world, as an independent nation and replacing whatever is beneficial from the EU (not much) with bi and multi-lateral agreements and treaties with European states or even the EU if it still exists. We will however be free of EU interference in our lives which would be a welcome change for many, probably the majority. Nick Clegg wouldn't agree with me, but I think that just strengthens my argument all the more. Phil Cox (UKIP)
  • Score: 0

4:00pm Tue 17 Dec 13

not a regular says...

Phil Cox (UKIP) wrote:
Hypocracy is a good descriptive word without the inherent insult so often hidden in the term NIMBY. I appreciate you had meant it in good faith in the hypocracy sense. In general I understand and agree with most of what you say, including about politicians both locally and nationally. I think UKIP recognises this also. I am however 100% for leaving the EU, trading with it, and the rest of the world, as an independent nation and replacing whatever is beneficial from the EU (not much) with bi and multi-lateral agreements and treaties with European states or even the EU if it still exists. We will however be free of EU interference in our lives which would be a welcome change for many, probably the majority. Nick Clegg wouldn't agree with me, but I think that just strengthens my argument all the more.
Cool. Think we've both got our points across. Certainly is a large group of people that are sick and tired of British politics, I look forward to reading the UKIP manifesto closer to election time.
[quote][p][bold]Phil Cox (UKIP)[/bold] wrote: Hypocracy is a good descriptive word without the inherent insult so often hidden in the term NIMBY. I appreciate you had meant it in good faith in the hypocracy sense. In general I understand and agree with most of what you say, including about politicians both locally and nationally. I think UKIP recognises this also. I am however 100% for leaving the EU, trading with it, and the rest of the world, as an independent nation and replacing whatever is beneficial from the EU (not much) with bi and multi-lateral agreements and treaties with European states or even the EU if it still exists. We will however be free of EU interference in our lives which would be a welcome change for many, probably the majority. Nick Clegg wouldn't agree with me, but I think that just strengthens my argument all the more.[/p][/quote]Cool. Think we've both got our points across. Certainly is a large group of people that are sick and tired of British politics, I look forward to reading the UKIP manifesto closer to election time. not a regular
  • Score: 0

10:35am Wed 18 Dec 13

garston tony says...

Phil Cox (UKIP) wrote:
garston tony wrote: I do wonder at the objection of 'people near by' to the 'destruction 'of green belt land when they themselves live in properties that 'destroyed' such land when they were built
How far do we go back on an argument like that one? The Romans? Celts?
Go as far back as you like, its still people saying 'its okay for me to live in this property that is built in and has already destroyed part of green belt land, but you cant'.

And I doubt that this gentleman is wanting to build a house there because he cant find a two up two down in town due to all the immigrants living in them. So 'nil points' for the blatant political broadcast about a totally different subject
[quote][p][bold]Phil Cox (UKIP)[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]garston tony[/bold] wrote: I do wonder at the objection of 'people near by' to the 'destruction 'of green belt land when they themselves live in properties that 'destroyed' such land when they were built[/p][/quote]How far do we go back on an argument like that one? The Romans? Celts?[/p][/quote]Go as far back as you like, its still people saying 'its okay for me to live in this property that is built in and has already destroyed part of green belt land, but you cant'. And I doubt that this gentleman is wanting to build a house there because he cant find a two up two down in town due to all the immigrants living in them. So 'nil points' for the blatant political broadcast about a totally different subject garston tony
  • Score: 1

12:10pm Wed 18 Dec 13

Ferryinn says...

What the article fails to mention is that this is a redevelopment.

The plans propose to demolish an existing, very run down building and replace it with a new building of a size allowed under permitted development rights.

Redevelopment is allowed on the Green Belt - not new development. I myself am very passionate about defending the Green Belt from new development but supportive of high quality redevelopment.
What the article fails to mention is that this is a redevelopment. The plans propose to demolish an existing, very run down building and replace it with a new building of a size allowed under permitted development rights. Redevelopment is allowed on the Green Belt - not new development. I myself am very passionate about defending the Green Belt from new development but supportive of high quality redevelopment. Ferryinn
  • Score: 3

12:50pm Wed 18 Dec 13

garston tony says...

Ferryinn wrote:
What the article fails to mention is that this is a redevelopment. The plans propose to demolish an existing, very run down building and replace it with a new building of a size allowed under permitted development rights. Redevelopment is allowed on the Green Belt - not new development. I myself am very passionate about defending the Green Belt from new development but supportive of high quality redevelopment.
Makes the opposition even stupider
[quote][p][bold]Ferryinn[/bold] wrote: What the article fails to mention is that this is a redevelopment. The plans propose to demolish an existing, very run down building and replace it with a new building of a size allowed under permitted development rights. Redevelopment is allowed on the Green Belt - not new development. I myself am very passionate about defending the Green Belt from new development but supportive of high quality redevelopment.[/p][/quote]Makes the opposition even stupider garston tony
  • Score: 2

12:35am Sat 21 Dec 13

Phlkalverboer says...

The whole point about this application is that the redevelopment would not be on same location as the current house. The new house would be moved right into the green belt! The objection from both the Parish and local residents is just about that, replacing the existing house with something new or similar size is fine. But that is not what Mr Mays wants, he wants to move it into the green belt for his own benefit: nicer lay out, away from the lane. The precedent would be of a national scale; that's why people are up in arms!
The whole point about this application is that the redevelopment would not be on same location as the current house. The new house would be moved right into the green belt! The objection from both the Parish and local residents is just about that, replacing the existing house with something new or similar size is fine. But that is not what Mr Mays wants, he wants to move it into the green belt for his own benefit: nicer lay out, away from the lane. The precedent would be of a national scale; that's why people are up in arms! Phlkalverboer
  • Score: -1

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