UPDATE 24th June 2014:
The BBC's Aled Scourfield at the Pembrokshire
Council meeting has
"Pembs Councillors vote
for a site visit before deciding on the future of Glandwr
This is what Charlie and Megan were hoping for;
bring the councillors out of their office face-to-face with one
of the most beautiful and environmentally friendly homes on the
planet. This gives them the opportunity to show the councillors
what it means to live naturally growing their own food and
taking care of their own needs sustainably. The site visit will
take place on the 23rd July. Their application will go before
the committee again the following week on the 29th July.
UPDATE 18th June 2014: "The dwelling will be dismantled and
committee meets on Tuesday 24th of June to discuss Charlie and
Megan's retrospective planning permission. The
agenda for the meeting is now available. The agenda includes
recommendation document that says,
recommended that the application be REFUSED"
and goes on to say,
"The dwelling will be dismantled
and removed. This would not be a difficult
task since it has been built predominantly from natural
This makes you wonder if Charlie might have had
a better chance of keeping his home if he had built it from steel
and concrete! Remember, this is a recommendation. Let's hope
when the planning committee sit together on the 24th that they
have compassion for Charlie, the environment and the many others
that want to live sustainably on the land.
Pembrokeshire Council's Facebook Page continues to be
inundated with messages of support for Charlie's retrospective
planning application. Maybe it's not too late to save Charlie's
This is Charlie's story...
Charlie, who built this beautiful straw bale roundhouse, is a young man with a young family and like many finds it
impossible to afford a home. In Charlie's case he had
things going for him. First his father owns a big enough plot of
land for Charlie to build a home. Second, the land was right next door to
ecoVillage in Wales where there is plenty of natural building
experience, inspiration and community spirit to help Charlie.
Finally, Charlie had been living with his partner
in a damp caravan for the past 4 years. With a baby on the way
Charlie felt he had no choice but to build his house without the
approval of the planning authorities, convinced permission for his
home would be refused.
The lack of affordable homes and strict planning regulations
touches many lives.
Hundertwasser the famous architect, designer and artist wrote, "The individual's desire to build something should not be
deterred! Everyone should be able and have to build and thus be
truly responsible for the four walls in which he lives".
Jon Jandai, Director of
Pun Pun Organic Farm
said at a TED presentation in Thailand,
"I want to be
equal to animals. The bird makes a nest in one or two days; the
rat digs a hole in one night, but clever humans like us spend 30
years to have a house... that's wrong."
Charlie's home is designed from the natural resources available on
the land rather than by building industry professionals that often
specify homes using processed materials with
high embodied energy.
This method of building is what
Evolutionary Architecture and
what Ben Law
teaches to architects who want to learn about sustainable natural
It took Charlie a little over a year to build
his home with a
reciprocal green roof
and lime plastered straw bale walls. All in all it cost Charlie
about £15,000 ($23,000). Watch this short video from film makers
Living in the Future where Charlie tells his story.
Charlie and Megan applied for retrospective
planning permission from Pembrokeshire County Council who decided that this wonderful, unobtrusive, sustainable home should
be demolished consigning Charlie, Meg and their child back to
their cold and damp caravan.
As of the 1st August 2013 Pembrokeshire County Council's enforcement say the
property must be demolished within 2 months because,
of the development did not outweigh the harm to the character and
appearance of the countryside".
This is the rural character
close to Charlie's home on
The picture above is a poster you can use in your social circles
(at full size) to invite your friends and followers to support Charlie. Follow the buttons to
Twitter and/or click the Pinit button to share it with your