Bid made for more eco-tents

Budle Bay campsite
Budle Bay campsite

Retrospective planning permission is being sought for a number of eco-tents built at Budle Bay Caravan Park, near Bamburgh.

Eight eco-tents were constructed in spring 2012, but the owners did not get planning permission. They now want to add another seven.

Peter Horne, the applicant’s agent, said: “They were originally built in the belief that they were in fact tents and therefore did not need planning permission

“Though the owners still maintain that the structures are tents, based on their understanding of what a tent is, they recognise that there is some doubt as to whether they are or are not and wish to remove that doubt.

“After long and constructive discussion with the planning department and after seeking legal opinion from the council, the owners have decided to apply for retrospective planning permission for these structures.”

The eco-tents have helped the campsite cope with the vagaries of the British weather, particularly last summer’s wash-out.

“There is no doubt that the extra income generated by having the eco-tents has helped the site financially get through such a difficult season,” said Mr Horne.

An unexpected benefit has also been attracting new client groups such as single parents, young adults with learning difficulties and their helpers.

“The ease of use, the relative low cost of staying in them, the weather protection they afford and yet the feeling of still camping, have encouraged new groups as well as others to visit the campsite in all weathers,” said Mr Horne.

Permission is also being sought for a single-storey wooden building to allow the wardens to stay on site all year round.

The new owners lives miles away and employ site wardens to manage the campsite.

“Obviously for business, health and safety reasons, wardens need to be on site 24 hours a day during the open season,” said Mr Horne.

A final decision will be taken by Northumberland County Council.