Unusual village eco-homes ‘no hippy commune’, says developer

PUBLISHED: 16:36 26 April 2013 | UPDATED: 17:18 26 April 2013

An example of a previous eco-friendly property that has been built

An example of a previous eco-friendly property that has been built


THIS could be the sight of things to come in a picturesque village – if plans for an “eco-village” get the go-ahead.

Plans are being drawn up for around 25 new homes made from sustainable materials, such as straw, in Tewin.

But the group behind the bid has voiced fears that neighbours will view the project as a “hippy commune”, saying that is not the case.

Developers say the buildings would be completely carbon neutral, and expect to lodge a planning application within months.

Plots of land on the Warrengate Farm site have been bought by people who want to construct Tewin Grove, which would be comprised of roughly 25 homes.

Keith Pierce, of the Tewin Grove Group, told the Welwyn Hatfield Times members were worried after previous plans caused a backlash.

He said: “The backlash was [that it was a] hippy commune.

“It is nothing like that, there is no kind of religious or spiritual background – nothing like that.”

He added: “I have got to be a little careful. Some of the people I speak to are very worried, as soon as we put in a planning application people will be worried.

“They live in Tewin, and Panshanger, in the very close area – they’re very scared.”

A number of the plots would feature affordable housing and talks are ongoing with planning authorities.

The group currently expects a planning application will be lodged with East Herts Council at the end of summer.

North East Herts MP Oliver Heald told the WHT he was unaware of the plans but would be following them with interest.

Tewin’s parliamentary representative said: “This is a very sensitive and important area environmentally, that the local councils have protected over many years.

“I’m sure my constituents would want to look at any plans very carefully and make objections as appropriate.

“We need new housing, but it’s important it should in the right places and shouldn’t damage our countryside.”

> Click on the gallery, top right, to see more examples of the type of home that could be built.

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