Carharrack family to face eviction after building a home without planning permission
A FAMILY from Redruth living a sustainable lifestyle are facing eviction if they don't move out of their self-built home.
Daniel, 37, and Laura, 32, Newman and their two young children, built a two-bedroomed wooden cabin in their field in Carharrack without planning permission from Cornwall Council more than four years ago.
More than 1,000 people have signed an online petition supporting their desire to stay but last week Cornwall Council took the family to court for breaching two enforcement notices issued more than two years ago.
"I am scared, anxious and stressed. This is a very upsetting time for us," Mr Newman said.
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"What are we going to do and where are we supposed to go? We can't buy a house because we cannot get a mortgage – we are on low incomes.
"This is the way we want to live but I feel we have been prosecuted for our beliefs."
The couple, who lived in St Agnes prior to buying the three quarters of an acre site, bought the plot in 2008 to lead a self-sufficient life.
After a few months in 2009 the couple moved to a caravan on the land.
"We weighed up our options and decided to build a small wooden cabin measuring 5m by 6m on the site."
But following complaints from three nearby residents Cornwall Council's enforcement officers visited the site and issued enforcement notices.
The couple said they have also been refused three planning applications since to build a permanent home on the land.
"What we have got is not a permanent structure, it's a mobile home.
"My son is supposed to start school in St Day next month and we have not got anywhere else to go.
"If they make us homeless that puts everything, including his education, in jeopardy."
Cornwall Council said planning policy advises that housing should be in, or well integrated with, towns and villages, and that housing development outside villages should be controlled to protect the countryside.
A spokesman said: "When development is undertaken without the required planning permission, the council assesses the development against relevant planning policies. If it is contrary to planning policy, the council has no alternative than to serve an enforcement notice requiring the removal of the development.
"Failure to comply with an enforcement notice is a criminal offence."
The couple appeared at Truro Magistrates' Court on Friday, but the case was adjourned for two weeks. They will appear before magistrates again on August 23.