Councils hit out at Mark Wright and Michelle Keegan’s plans to make dream Essex castle ‘a fortress’ 


Mark Wright and Michelle Keegan’s plans to make their dream family home a fortress has been criticised by two local councils.

The couple have demolished a £1.3 million farmhouse and are building a five-bedroom house in Essex, complete with bar, gym and outdoor swimming pool.

They recently put in a new planning application to make the estate more secure by surrounding it with a ‘rendered wall’ between 1.8 metres and 2.1 metres high. 

EXCLUSIVE: Mark Wright and Michelle Keegan’s plans to make their dream family home a fortress has been criticised by two local councils

Both Epping Forest District Council and Stanford Rivers Parish Council have hit out at the ‘inappropriate’ plans claiming they’re not in keeping with the tone of the ‘rural area’ and they would have to cut down trees to make way for the wall.

On one side of the property, there’s a public right of way, which would be blocked, according to the objections.

Epping Forest District Council wrote: ‘This site is in a very rural area, on a minor country lane.

‘Whilst we accept that the existing conifer screen could be considered to be incongruous within this setting, to replace it with a 2.1metre high rendered wall would be totally out of keeping, and fail to enhance the rural landscape setting. 

Massive work: The couple have demolished a £1.3 million farmhouse and are building a five-bedroom house in Essex, complete with bar, gym and outdoor swimming pool

Massive work: The couple have demolished a £1.3 million farmhouse and are building a five-bedroom house in Essex, complete with bar, gym and outdoor swimming pool

Plans: They recently put in a new planning application to make the estate more secure by surrounding it with a 'rendered wall' between 1.8 metres and 2.1 metres high

Plans: They recently put in a new planning application to make the estate more secure by surrounding it with a ‘rendered wall’ between 1.8 metres and 2.1 metres high

Unimpressed: Both Epping Forest District Council and Stanford Rivers Parish Council have hit out at the 'inappropriate' plans

Unimpressed: Both Epping Forest District Council and Stanford Rivers Parish Council have hit out at the ‘inappropriate’ plans

Not in keeping: The councils claimed the plans are not in keeping with the tone of the 'rural area' and they would have to cut down trees to make way for the wall

Public right of way: On one side of the property, there's a public right of way, which would be blocked, according to the objections

Not in keeping: The councils claimed the plans are not in keeping with the tone of the ‘rural area’ and they would have to cut down trees to make way for the wall

Rural setting: Epping Forest District Council wrote: 'This site is in a very rural area, on a minor country lane

Rural setting: Epping Forest District Council wrote: ‘This site is in a very rural area, on a minor country lane

Incongruous: 'Whilst we accept that the existing conifer screen could be considered to be incongruous within this setting' read the report

Out of keeping: 'To replace it with a 2.1metre high rendered wall would be totally out of keeping, and fail to enhance the rural landscape setting' it continued

Incongruous: ‘Whilst we accept that the existing conifer screen could be considered to be incongruous within this setting’ read the report

‘None of the other properties on this lane have such inappropriate boundary treatments.

‘Additionally, we note that the wall on the right hand side of the proposed entrance is within trees.

‘The trees and woodland are protected by a woodland tree preservation order, therefore tree reports should have been submitted to support the proposal… potentially resulting in loss or damage to important tree assets.

‘Our records also show a Public Right of Way, and a check of the Definitive Public Rights of Way map on Essex County Council website, confirms that there have been not alterations to its route.

‘To build the walls as proposed it would block access to this right of way.’

Inappropriate: 'None of the other properties on this lane have such inappropriate boundary treatments' claimed the report

Noted: 'Additionally, we note that the wall on the right hand side of the proposed entrance is within trees' it continued

Inappropriate: ‘None of the other properties on this lane have such inappropriate boundary treatments’ claimed the report

Protected: 'The trees and woodland are protected by a woodland tree preservation order, therefore tree reports should have been submitted to support the proposal…'

Protected: ‘The trees and woodland are protected by a woodland tree preservation order, therefore tree reports should have been submitted to support the proposal…’

Damage: The report explained that the proposed work could potentially 'result in loss or damage to important tree assets'

'Protected: 'Our records also show a Public Right of Way, and a check of the Definitive Public Rights of Way map on Essex County Council website, confirms that there have been not alterations to its route.

Damage: The report explained that the proposed work could potentially ‘result in loss or damage to important tree assets’

Blocking access: 'To build the walls as proposed it would block access to this right of way'

Blocking access: ‘To build the walls as proposed it would block access to this right of way’

Objections: The parish council were equally scathing about the plans, stating: 'The Parish Council OBJECTS to this application'

Objections: The parish council were equally scathing about the plans, stating: ‘The Parish Council OBJECTS to this application’

The parish council were equally scathing about the plans, stating: ‘The Parish Council OBJECTS to this application.

‘The design of the heigh walls, together with the pillars and the gates, are out of keeping with the rural setting, and would detract from the rural nature of this particular area of the Parish.

‘In addition, a public footpath currently runs through this property, and whilst we understand there may be possible applications to alter this in the future, we could not at this time support a planning application which would effectively block a public right of way.’ 

Rural setting: 'The design of the heigh walls, together with the pillars and the gates, are out of keeping with the rural setting'

Rural setting: ‘The design of the heigh walls, together with the pillars and the gates, are out of keeping with the rural setting’

Detracting: The council continued to explain that the plans 'would detract from the rural nature of this particular area of the Parish'

Detracting: The council continued to explain that the plans ‘would detract from the rural nature of this particular area of the Parish’

Public pathway? 'In addition, a public footpath currently runs through this property'

Public pathway? ‘In addition, a public footpath currently runs through this property’

Future alterations: 'There may be possible applications to alter this in the future...'

Not supported: '...we could not at this time support a planning application which would effectively block a public right of way'

Future alterations: ‘There may be possible applications to alter this in the future, we could not at this time support a planning application which would effectively block a public right of way’

No problem! Both councils had no objection to adding a wooden gate with rendered piers

No problem! Both councils had no objection to adding a wooden gate with rendered piers

Grand designs: The former TOWIE star and Corrie actress have also put in an application for a Hollywood-style paver driveway with a roundabout for their fleet of cars

Grand designs: The former TOWIE star and Corrie actress have also put in an application for a Hollywood-style paver driveway with a roundabout for their fleet of cars

Both councils had no objection to them adding a wooden gate with rendered piers.

The former TOWIE star and Corrie actress have also put in an application for a Hollywood-style paver driveway with a roundabout for their fleet of cars.

They also want bi-folding doors for all the windows on the ground floor at the rear, so that the whole house opens out to the pool area and where Mark has his mini-football pitch. 

Mark Wright’s representatives branded the claims ‘nonsense’ when approached by MailOnline 

Michelle Keegan’s representatives declined to comment when approached by MailOnline. 

Stunning views: They also want bi-folding doors for all the windows on the ground floor

Stunning views: They also want bi-folding doors for all the windows on the ground floor

Plans for a pool: The whole house opens out to the pool area and where Mark has his mini-football pitch

Plans for a pool: The whole house opens out to the pool area and where Mark has his mini-football pitch

Not true? Mark Wright's representatives branded the claims 'nonsense'

Not true? Mark Wright’s representatives branded the claims ‘nonsense’

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