Charlotte Church’s dream to build an eco-friendly wellness retreat in Wales has been opposed by her local council – who fear it could cause ‘unacceptable risk’ to drivers.
The singer, who has invested her entire life savings in the project, is currently facing a fight with highway officials. They warn that her plans will cause havoc on peaceful country roads.
Charlotte previously splashed out £1.5 million on purchasing the 16th-century mansion in Elan Valley in the hope that she can transform it into a swanky retreat, offering activities including yoga, hiking and cold-water swimming.
Snag: Charlotte Church has reportedly been hit by a setback in her dream to build an eco-friendly wellness retreat in Wales, after warning she’s poured her life savings into the project
Her costs to renovate the property, where designer Laura Ashley previously lived, are said to have ballooned to £1.2 million.
Her plans were thwarted by objections received from Powys County Council’s Highways Department, who warned about potential dangers for motorists on the narrow lane leading to the 47-acre estate.
The planning department received a report stating that the proposal could result in significantly more vehicle movement than the quoted 22 per day. [by the plans]’.
At odds with the highway authorities: After converting Rhydoldog house, the singer now faces a fight with them.
Natural Resources Wales Environment Agency raised concerns about the possibility of damage to nearby River Wye and bar breeding sites.
At the end of January the decision will be made by the local authority’s planning commission. Charlotte was sent a statement saying that she hopes for the site’s carbon neutrality.
MailOnline reached out to representatives from Powys County Council and Charlotte Church for comments.
Expensive: Her costs to renovate the property, where designer Laura Ashley previously lived, are said to have ballooned to £1.2 million
Charlotte will be documenting the entire process in her TV series, Charlotte’s Dream Build. The show helps to raise funds and it starts on January 11.
Rhydoldog Houses offers seven rooms with breathtaking views overlooking the surrounding countryside. The house also includes a 200 year-old barn that will become guests houses. A large hall can also be used for events.
Charlotte previously confessed that she has ‘spent her life savings’ on the project, and was also given £300,000 by her parents towards the renovations.
Charlotte stated these words in a trailer of her new series. “I don’t know what I’m doing,” and sheShe was seen clearing out walls and raking her garden while she roped in family members and friends to assist with the construction.
Charlotte said, “It’s an absolute mess. There’s so many things to do.”
She added, “If we don’t open by June, then I’m in serious trouble.”
Back in June, Charlotte revealed that applications were open to share in her dream of ‘a system of non-hierarchical participatory democracy’ at the home, which dates back to the 15th Century.
Lavish: Charlotte previously splashed out £1.5 million on purchasing the 16th-century mansion in Elan Valley in the hope that she can transform it into a swanky retreat
The goal of her project is to establish a healing center with spiritual healing practices, such as forest bathing or sound ceremony.
She explained that mid-Wales has 47 acres of magical wonderousness. For the next one year, we are creating a small democracy here.
“We will be focusing on various wellbeing practices such as meditation and connecting with the natural world. You might do some chanting before dawn.
“Send us a request if interested in living with others, trying new things, and reconnecting with your community, nature, and yourself.”
The proposal for Rhydoldog House, Wales, described how the guests would undergo a cleansing ritual with their feet in spring water before making a ceremonial entry to the Elan Valley property.
Vision: The first-ever documentation submitted by Powys to their planning department last month reveals Charlotte’s vision and explains how its four key goals have shaped these plans
Green: Plans for a lake, car port and solar panels are also included in the application
It is interesting: The plans indicate that both the ceremonial and the boot room doors have significant significance in the building.
Charlotte says the stunning backdrop is a great way to reconnect with nature.
Charlotte reportedly splashed out £1.5million on the estate that has seven bedrooms and a 200-year-old barn that will be converted into a large hall for gatherings and events.
The home currently receives 80 percent of its electricity from the onsite hydro-mill, and plans are underway to install solar cells to provide another 20%.
Charlotte anticipates that the conversion of the property to a retreat will take twelve months and she hopes to have it completed by June 2022.
“You’ll need to share with us your experience and skills as well as why you are interested in this opportunity. You can’t have any skill without value so be sure to declare them all when you apply for the position.
End Goal: Charlotte and Arbor Architects have planned a wild moongarden of white plants. Guests will be asked to leave their shoes in the entryway. This is a Japanese-inspired design known as a ‘Shikii Threshold.
Renovation: Charlotte plans to build four log cabins in the woods with the roots and trunks of felled and living trees. A separate application details Charlotte’s plans.
Pictured: Charlotte’s barn, which she plans to convert
Action plan: Charlotte plans to construct four log cabins in the woodlands surrounding her mid Wales home.
Black Cat Architects with Arbor Architects are collaborating to design a wild, white garden. Guests can leave their shoes at the door, and Charlotte, 33-year-old multi-millionaire, will take over. The entranceway is based on a Japanese design, called a Shikii Threshold.
According to the planning documents, a member of staff will wash your feet. You will then be met in the welcome hall with the staff.
A sweeping driveway lined with trees will take guests from their car to the landscaping-based, biodiversity moongarden at the front. This garden will replace the current parking lot that will be relocated to the rear.
The proposal states that by restoring the front yard as a garden, the main entry to the house would be easier to read and more connected with the landscape.
“This will be a ceremonyal arrival that allows guests to fully immerse themselves into the natural beauty of the site without being impeded by vehicles or back-of-house facilities.
After the foot-bathing ritual, guests will cross the Shikii Threshold. Guests will need to enter a boot room’ for the rest of their stay.
According to the plans, both ceremonial as well as boot room entries have special significance inside the building.
Charlotte’s Dream: In January, Charlotte revealed her vision to build a retreat for wellness that offers space for spiritual healing and mixed martial arts as well as yoga, outdoor pursuits, and spaces for meditation.
Big money: She previously confessed that she has ‘spent her life savings’ on the project, and was also given £300,000 by her parents towards the renovations
The ceremonial entrance is the beginning of retreat stays, with the boot room marking the border between external and internal activities.
The estate, set on nearly 50 acres of property, was the former residence of Laura Ashley fashion magnate.
The area is home to steeply-sloping old woodlands, dramatic outcrops of rocky rock, waterfalls, and stunning views over distant mountains, from an elevated position above Rhayader.
Charlotte is convinced that the beautiful backdrop will help people’reconnect to nature. The retreat proposals state: “Create space to encourage people to connect with nature; Encourage social gathering; Promote ritual, ceremony, and rights to passage;
“Consider site resilience, and consider options to improve the energy performance of your site.”
Charlotte shared her dreams earlier in the year of creating a holistic wellness retreat that would offer space for yoga, mixed martial art, and spiritual healing.
Planned features for a lake, car port and solar panels are included in this application.
An additional application shows Charlotte’s plans to build four log cabins in the woods as well as a bathhouse there using trunks from felled and living trees.
Rhayader Town Council was present at the site with 12 other members of public. Powys County Council is now considering the application.