Help the Old Vicarage, Castle Hedingham! Please overturn the Planning Enforcement Notice.
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The Old Vicarage in Castle Hedingham has been operating as short-term holiday accommodation since Mar 2017. By using the Old Vicarage in this way, many new visitors have stayed in the village who otherwise wouldn't have. This has given a great boost to local business by people spending money in the pubs, restaurants, shop and cafe etc, and also by supporting the businesses contracted to work there. There is a shortage of accommodation in the village and therefore without the accommodation offered by the Old Vicarage, guests to weddings at the Castle regularly have to travel to other towns to stay in hotels there.
The house was in great order at the start of the lease and the freeholder is a conscientious individual. However, since taking over, the leaseholder has spent significant funds on the upkeep of this beautiful listed building; the holiday let business generates the funds to maintain this iconic property and thereby keeps it in good order for future generations.
The leaseholder understands the concerns of (and empathises with) the neighbours who live nearby. Numerous changes and concessions have been made to try to alleviate these concerns. Through discussion and goodwill, the leaseholder is prepared to make further changes to reach a stage where all are content.
The term 'party house' has been repeatedly used by those wishing to damage our reputation and is an inaccurate description of how the house is used and let out. The Old Vicarage is generally booked by extended families wishing to get everyone together under one roof (using the nine bedrooms in the house), to celebrate Granny's 75th, for example. Bookings are not accepted for stand-alone parties and events. Stag-do weekend bookings are not accepted.
Help us to support the village and community; support the Old Vicarage!
We, the undersigned, support the use of the Old Vicarage for short-term holiday accommodation and ask the Planning Inspectorate and Braintree District Council to reconsider their decision to prevent the Old Vicarage being used in the way in which it currently is.
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