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The Telegraph
The Telegraph
5 Aug 2023

A date has been set for an appeal against an order to demolish a spa pool block built at the home of Captain Sir Tom Moore’s daughter.

Hannah Ingram-Moore and her husband Colin applied in 2021 for permission to build a Captain Tom Foundation Building in the grounds of their home in Marston Moretaine, Bedfordshire.

The L-shaped building was given the green light, and in a design and access and heritage statement it was described as to be used partly “in connection with The Captain Tom Foundation and its charitable objectives”.

A subsequent retrospective application in 2022, for a larger C-shaped building containing a spa pool, was refused by the planning authority.

Central Bedfordshire Council said last month that an enforcement notice requiring the demolition of the “now-unauthorised building” was issued and was subject to an appeal to the Planning Inspectorate.

Sir Tom raised £38.9 million for the NHS, including gift aid, by walking 100 laps of his garden before his 100th birthday at the height of the first national Covid-19 lockdown in April 2020.

He was knighted by the late Queen during a unique open-air ceremony at Windsor Castle in summer 2020. He died in February 2021.

In documents appealing against the notice, the family said the building was “no more overbearing” than a previously approved planning application and the “heights are the same”.

The appeal statement by Mr Ingram-Moore said: “The view is virtually identical save for a pitch roof being added to the elevational treatment. The heights are the same. As such there cannot be an unacceptable overbearing impact.”

It also said the council had “no grounds supporting the refusal of the retrospective application” and “requested” for the inspector to uphold the appeal.

The document also notes that the building is set at the back of the site, meaning it is not an issue for public view.

The council said its reports “detail harm caused to the setting of the listed building and, in particular, the significant difference between the two schemes that arises from the lack of sufficient public benefit that has been proposed in respect of the unauthorised building”.

Documents from the local government body also state that the demolition requirement is not “excessive” and the “size and scale of the unauthorised building” has an adverse impact on the Ingram-Moore’s neighbours.

The Planning Inspectorate is set to hold a hearing on October 17.