FREE TRELOYHAN OF APPROVED PLANNING
For over a year, the town of St Ives in Cornwall has been struggling to oppose a plan by Methodist Guild Holidays Ltd to develop the historic grounds of Treloyhan Manor. In this, we are not just up against a Hotel operator with a multi-million-pound budget, we are having to fight our own Council. A deluge of letters in protest, numerous public demonstrations, detailed critiques of the Eco-survey and Tree Survey – all have been ignored by Cornwall Council.
Approval has now been granted for the Methodist Guild’s plan to raise £4.7 million by selling off 16 plots within the grounds of Treloyhan. These plots – to be sold for executive housing to fund an upgrade of the hotel – will cover approximately 70% of the woodland of Treloyhan
The development would have a serious impact on local biodiversity. The grounds of Treloyhan are a vital wildlife corridor, home to badgers, foxes and 5 species of bat, as well as numerous birds including protected species such as the Spotted Flycatcher.
The majestic trees within the grounds are covered by a Tree Preservation Order… this has simply been set-aside, along with the Local Plan policies that should protect the site from development
A Tree Survey in support of the development claimed that only 6% of trees would be felled – in fact, the true number is between 25 & 30% with even more felling likely, since old mine-shafts must be located and capped.
A bat survey has been carried out, but since this is based on the myth that only 6% of trees would be lost, it is meaningless. A badger sett within the grounds will be closed under licence. Meanwhile an entire badger colony, which relies completely upon Treloyhan for foraging and access inland, was not even located by the ecologists. Spotted Flycatchers are known to breed on the site … yet the Ecologists argued that a survey was not necessary.
You can read our detailed critiques of the Surveys, along with reports and photos on the badger colony and the mining history of Treloyhan at http://infostuffonline.wix.com/treloyhan
The history of the site is just as rich and deserving of protection as the environment. Originally the site of the Wheal Marjory Mine producing tin and copper, the land at Treloyhan was bought by the Cornish shipping magnate Sir Edward Hain in the 1890s. The Manor building was designed for Sir Edward by the renowned Cornish architect, Sylvanus Trevail.
Treloyhan Manor is thus the ancestral home of one of the great figures in Cornish industrial history. Sir Edward Hain’s shipping company rivalled the other great shipping firms of the late 19th and early 20th century and was eventually merged with P&O. The grounds of Treloyhan, which contain a mix of native and naturalised trees, were designed for Hain by the eminent German designer FW Meyer. Sir Edward Hain was a great benefactor to St Ives and provided for public access to the grounds of Treloyhan, wanting the townspeople to enjoy their beauty. The grounds are thus seen as integral with the Manor building. Quite simply, Treloyhan is a major part of the town’s history and its identity.
Who are Cornwall Council and the Methodist Guild to rob a town of its proud history?
Local people have been behind us throughout. We have two Facebook sites that are constantly updated and full of local expressions of dismay and anger at the decision by Cornwall Council. Our online petition has reached almost 5,000 signatures!
Public Facebook Link https://www.facebook.com/RachaelOwl
What the planners are doing is plain wrong… what’s more, they’ve blatantly broken or bent every rule in the book! At a recent meeting of the Council, at which approval was granted, the Planning Case Officer for Cornwall made a mockery of planning law.
· He described the site as ‘brownfield’
· He took no account of the emerging Neighbourhood Plan, which identifies Treloyhan as a vital wildlife corridor
· He disregarded the protection of the old Local Plan which identifies the site as an important public amenity
· He set aside the Tree Preservation Order covering the trees to be felled
· He dismissed our in-depth critiques of the Ecological and Tree surveys
· He even stated that disciplinary proceedings against the Ecologists for the inadequate survey work was not relevant to the application!
At the last minute, one of the Council’s own Officers – head of the Archaeology Unit – submitted a report calling for full surveys of the likely impact of the proposed development. His recommendations were simply ignored! All the documents, including over 230 letters of objection can be viewed on the Cornwall Council Planning Portal; application PA14/00811
The objections, the public protests and the local plans have all been set-aside in favour of the Methodist Guild’s desire to raise £4.7 million to upgrade the Hotel. They argue the development is justified because it will improve the tourist trade of the town, but the reality is that it will do far more damage to St Ives’ tourist appeal by destroying the green entrance to the town, urbanising one of the town’s most historic beauty spots and destroying the tranquil beauty of Hain Walk, one of St Ives most popular tourist walks.
Please help us with our appeal … Local Plans are vital for a community to protect those sites that are important and which make up the social, environmental and historic character of an area.Treloyhan is protected! We want to get that protection upheld and fully recognised at the High Court.