Farmer appeals to use Rotherfield ‘Cowshed’ for residence

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The owner of a Rotherfield farm is appealing against Wealden District Council’s decision to issue an enforcement notice for breach of planning consent over use of his land.

Timothy Raikes has filed an appeal with the Secretary of State in an attempt to overturn Wealden’s ruling.

When the enforcement notice was issued, he was told the change of use of a building known as The Old Cowshed from agricultural use to mixed and residential use, including stationing of a caravan, was not allowed.

Planners said the site lies about 5km from the Ashdown Forest Special Protection Area.

This area supports a complex of heathlands in southern England which in turn supports breeding bird populations of European importance.

They also point out the land lies within the formally designated High Weald AONB, outside any development boundary and inside the 7km zone of influence for the Forest protection area.

He was ordered to remove all domestic furniture, fixtures and fittings, personal effects, rubbish, materials, tools and equipment from the site.