Tearing down the hippies house

Planning row: Officials from Torridge District Council have now said that the home must be torn down

Planning row: Officials from Torridge District Council have now said that the home must be torn down

Eco loons who seem to spend much of their life calling for laws to stop this that and the next thing get their beans for not following the rules.

One thing it does show is how an Eco loon thinks we should all live, imagine a nice subdivision of these shacks and the pleasant aroma of composting human waste and sanctimony.

A couple who spent five years building Britain’s greenest home by hand, using old railway sleepers and lorry tyres, have been ordered to tear it down.

Matthew Lepley and Jules Smith decided not to ask for planning permission from Torridge District Council in Devon because it takes consumes too much paper and energy, and defies their eco-friendly ‘personal principles’. 

Mr Lepley, 34, and Ms Smith, 54, moved from a London tower block to the countryside in 2009, and lived in tents while they constructed their dream house by hand.

They lived off the land while they constructed the one bedroom cabin from scrap wood and metal. They also shunned the use of power tools in their quest to live ‘at one with nature’. The final product has no electricity or running water and a compost heap for a toilet.

Officials have now served Matthew, 34, and Jules, 54, with an enforcement notice ordering them to ‘remove’ it from their field in in Beaworthy, Devon.

Mr Lepley said: ‘We wanted to build a home that would let us truly live as one with nature. We used recycled materials, an axe to break up the wood and hand tools to piece the structure together.

‘The process was a lot slower but it was extremely satisfying. We wanted to reduce carbon emissions as much as possible. The plans for the house have changed over the years in accordance to our needs and nature. The heat comes from a woodburner which heats the water for the bathroom.

‘We don’t have electricity but we get by with paraffin lamps and candles. This life is not for everyone but we love it – it enables us to live a therapeutic lifestyle and be self-sufficient.

‘We took the decision to build without planning permission because the council’s procedure is not environmentally friendly enough and it goes against our personal principles.’

Smelly: The couple have an outdoor compost toilet

Smelly: The couple have an outdoor compost toilet


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