Proposed guest lodge at Hozier’s Wicklow property falls foul of planning rules

Singer-songwriter Hozier has been told that proposed new guest accommodation at his Co Wicklow period property falls foul of planning rules.

Last year the music star, whose full name is Andrew Hozier Byrne, lodged plans to construct ancillary accommodation to his main home near Newcastle, Co Wicklow.

The plans were to build a two-bedroom, two-storey detached guest lodge and gym, along with an adjacent double and single height structure with pitched and flat roofs, for a recreation space.

Hozier had previously secured planning permission from Wicklow County Council for a basement swimming pool and modern grass roof extension for the home he purchased for €780,000.

However, in a letter requesting revised plans and new reports, the council told the award-winning performer that it is unlikely to grant planning permission for the guest lodge.

In the letter, the council told Hozier that the proposed guest accommodation is considered as a new dwelling and that it “does not represent a necessary dwelling in the rural area”.

As a result, the guest lodge “would be contrary to the settlement strategy for the Rural Area” as set out in the Wicklow County Development Plan 2022 to 2028.

On Hozier’s plans for the recreation space, the council told him that he needed to justify the need for an ancillary building of this scale in a rural area which is not related to agricultural use.

The council requested Hozier to clearly outline the intended use of the recreational space.

It said that in Hozier’s response, he should clarify if significant numbers of people will be using the recreational space, and if so, what for.

The letter said “the use of the proposed structures should not impact on the residential amenity of the area”.

The planning authority also said there were concerns over how the proposed development could affect “the tree whose canopy falls within the footprint of the proposed development”.

The council said mature trees on the site contribute significantly to the setting. It requested that Hozier submits an arborist report that assesses the potential impact on the root systems of trees in the area.

As part of the raft of further information requested, the council also asked the singer to lodge an archaeologist’s report as the site is within a zone of archaeological potential at Newcastle.

It said there was “potential for archaeological remains associated with the historic settlement to survive within the footprint of the proposed development which will likely require excavation to facilitate the foundations of the proposed new structures”.

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