Woman 'forced to demolish unlawful two-storey home'

A report that a woman has been forced to demolish her 'dream £150,000 home' because she built it without planning permission features in today's newspaper round-up.

The Sun reports that "Sue Wilesmith, 63, bought a plot of land near Looe, Cornwall, and decided to start building a two-storey timber property". But the paper adds that "her new home has been completely taken to pieces because she failed to obtain planning permission from Cornwall Council". The paper quotes Wilesmith saying: "I applied for a certificate of lawful use but that was rejected. Then I applied for retrospective planning permission but they weren't having any of that."

Writing in The Guardian Alastair Parvin, the founder of Open Systems Lab, a non-profit company working on digital innovation in housing and the built environment, says councils should lease land to people wanting to build their own homes. He writes: "Imagine being able to go to a website, find an affordable plot of land near where you live, and apply to lease it with only a few clicks. Once you’ve got the lease, imagine being able to connect with a whole array of companies and local lenders who can help you get a home customised to your needs."

A report in The Guardian looks at issues arising from gentrification in the US city of Atlanta. The article says that "gentrification is affecting cities around the world, but housing advocates say there’s something especially unsettling about racial dynamics of those forces in Atlanta".

An article in The Guardian says that a single Airbnb "host" in the Spanish city of Barcelona manages a portfolio of 204 apartments worth €37,721 (£33,369) a day in rental income during the high season, research by a data organisation established to look into Spain’s tourist apartment industry has found. The paper says the research "appears to contradict the ‘shared economy’ image projected by Airbnb and other players in the online apartment marketplace and come as city authorities grapple with growing evidence that the massive upsurge in tourist apartments is driving rents up and residents out".

The Times reports that energy giant BP "has been granted regulatory approval for the £230 million development of a new oilfield in the North Sea". The paper says that regulatory body the Oil and Gas Authority "gave the green light for the Alligin field, 140km west of Shetland, which is expected to start up in 2020 and produce 12,000 barrels of oil a day at its peak".

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