'I want the bulldozers
and I want them now'
PUBLISHED: 14:58 25 September 2006 | UPDATED: 22:15 28 May 2010
NOT only does Fenland District Council say it must go, but the Government s Planning Inspectorate has confirmed its removal within six months. For JOHN GAWTHORP his dream of living in a converted stable beside Bedlam Bridge on the Upwell Road, March, is o
NOT only does Fenland District Council say it must go, but the Government's Planning Inspectorate has confirmed its removal within six months.
For JOHN GAWTHORP his dream of living in a converted stable beside Bedlam Bridge on the Upwell Road, March, is over. He says he will always believe he had been given permission to be there. In his own words, he described the emotional turmoil the decision has left him in.
"I want the bulldozers and I want them now. I cannot go on like this. I've suffered dramatic weight loss and lack of sleep.
"I want to lead a normal life. I insist that my lovely stable home, all my savings and hard work be demolished as soon as possible.
"A lot of people have stopped and said how lovely our home and land is, but they have our full permission to demolish our home months earlier. My health is suffering and that, too, of my dear wife Elaine, who is severely disabled.
"I shall always believe I had permission to be here, but what chance do I have of carrying on the fight? I don't.
"I spent £7,000 connecting my home to an electricity supply, believing I was within my rights to do so. That is all now lost.
"The inspector who conducted my appeal only stayed a few minutes on our three acre site and only walked in from the gate and into our home. He never looked round, and he later described it as an "alien building." but there is much worse elsewhere in Fenland.
"I will not be appealing again because the enforcement order is now served. If and when my beautiful home is demolished, I will plot out my land in sections and sell them to the travelling communities.
"Perhaps this will please the Fenland planners and surrounding neighbours.
"In the post this week was another letter from Fenland Council telling me my building is now complete and, from July 28, I am eligible to pay Council Tax.
"I have no idea what I am going to do. I have no idea where I am going to live. I thought and believed, when I sold my house in Chatteris, that my wife and I could live out our days here, troubling no one.
"I have no idea how this will all end.