Neil Payne 15th September 2022

15 September 2022     British Alpaca Society     BAS Board

11 years and we are finally in!

In 2011 our entire family moved in to two mobile homes on our farm here at Wellow on the Isle of Wight, a real shock to the system after living in several beautiful houses that I had built for us previously.

We moved in on the advice of our planning consultant because he said they will never give you approval to live on the farm unless you are actually there so that was the commencement of a seven-year battle. A planning application for temporary agricultural workers accommodation went in, a refusal, a refusal on appeal which the inspector got wildly wrong on the day. Us then proving to the Local Authority that they and the inspector had got it wildly wrong and the local authority coming to realise we were serious, and we were making a positive contribution to the Island and were not just someone else trying it on to get a house in the countryside. We were invited to make a further application for temporary accommodation which was approved I think in 2016 followed by approval for our house in 2019. It took a further three years to organise the funds to build the house as much to Michelle’s disgust I kept ploughing any spare money into our business West Wight Alpacas Ltd. Finally, we moved in on the 1st September 2022. It really wanted another week to get it finished but Michelle insisted, I guess she had waited long enough.

It is fantastic going through our stuff that has been packed away for so many years and hanging pictures on the walls that we have not seen for over ten years. We still have much to do and the outside is still a bit of a mess but in 2022 Cusco House was born and we have a home again!