North West Wales

Bear Grylls' company Llanbedrog beach hut plan criticised

Bear Grylls Image copyright Getty Images

A company headed by Bear Grylls faces opposition over its plan to build 25 beach huts in a Gwynedd beauty spot.

The adventurer is the co-director of a consortium behind the proposal for Llanbedrog headland, alongside "tourism-related schemes".

But people in the area said the scheme would "ruin an idyllic beach".

The planning agent for Grylls' business partner, who has submitted the plan to Gwynedd council, had "no comment" to make.

However, Grylls tweeted on Friday: "We would never do anything negative there. We bought it to protect the land. Owners simply want to discuss local beach options."

The headland - a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty - overlooks St Tudwal's island, which Mr Grylls bought for £95,000 in 2001.

The applicant on the plan is James Nichols, who along with Mr Grylls and two others are directors of the Cheshire-registered Llanbedrog Headland Company.

Image copyright Bear Grylls/Twitter

It has proposed building six metre (20ft)-long huts at Quarry beach, which is on one side of the headland. The National Trust owns the beach on the other side.

"We welcome tourism projects. But not on this beach," said councillor John Jones of Llanbedrog community council.

"There are already beach huts in Llanbedrog and Abersoch. We want this area to remain beautiful and untouched."

The plan adds that the proposal is at a "very early stage of formulation" and they "wish to meet with the council to understand its aspirations for the area".

In October 2015, Mr Grylls was given planning permission to construct a 39m (129ft) slipway on St Tudwal's, despite fears it would visually impact on the area.

Prior to that, he had to remove a slide that ran into the sea in 2013 after facing a planning investigation.

Image copyright Thinkstock
Image caption The nearby Llanbedrog beach is already home to colourful beach huts

A Gwynedd council spokesman confirmed it had received "an application for pre-application advice regarding beach huts in the Mynydd Tir y Cwmwd, Llanbedrog area".

He added: "Planning officers will usually respond by referring to the relevant designations, relevant local and national planning policies and provide advice regarding the information that would be required if a decision was taken to submit a full planning application."

The company's planning agents, Manchester-based Peter Brett Associates, would not comment.

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