Secret Green Community Saved from Demolition

Emma Orbach founded the self-sustaining Brithdir Mawr community in Wales. "It's a milestone in a free society that a minority of people who wish to live simply on the Earth are now being given this opportunity. The villagers are pioneering a new lifestyle." Down the road, Tony Wrench has been pioneering "permaculture" for decades, and built the Roundhouse, an "ecohome of wood frame, cobwood and recycled window walls, straw-insulated turf roof; with solar power and wind turbine for electricity, compost toilet and reed beds for grey water. "

There was only one problem: They were doing it secretly, on public land in the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park. In 1998 a pilot doing an aerial survey caught a reflection off a plexiglass skylight and the jig was up.

roundhouse hidden photo

However, according to Times Online, after ten years the park authorities have thrown in the towel in their attempts to evict the community. It seems that the community has become environmentally fashionable.

"The planners did everything they could to get rid of us, but we have been able to prove to them that it is possible to have a sustainable and low-impact community in the countryside," Mr Wrench said.

"It's great that our efforts to build a community using renewable resources have now been supported. We had to prove that we were improving the bio-diversity of the area and conserving the woodland — and we did that. " ::Times and Guardian
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