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  • Writer's pictureMichelle Weir (Local Democracy Reporter)

Green light for accommodation with a difference in a grain silo in Co Antrim

The living area of a converted grain silo in County Antrim.

A retrospective application for tourist accommodation in a converted agricultural silo was approved at a meeting of Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council’s Planning Committee on Monday evening.

A planning officer told the committee the silo building at Gloverstown Road, Randalstown, located within a farm, has been converted into tourist accommodation with living and dining facilities on the first floor.

She said it is “run in conjunction with operations on the farm” and no letters of objection have been received.

Agent Theresa Cassidy, a planning consultant, said:

“The Alexander family is highly regarded in the agriculture industry. James has a huge social media presence.”

She stressed the accommodation is “run in conjunction with the farming business” and can “offer a place to stay within the heart of this farm”.

“It is a perfect example of an agricultural tourism scheme. There is no issue with the scale of the proposal, It does not cause harm to residential amenity. It makes use of a disused silo and reuses an existing farm building,” she added.

“It is a disused silo that has been retained in a sensitive and quirky conversion.”

A planner’s report to the committee says: “The agent has stated that the proposal will support agri-tourism in that the accommodation will provide the opportunity for visitors and other farmers to experience the applicant’s pedigree cattle and sheep whilst availing of staying on site.

“The farm business is considered to be active and established, it involves the reuse of an existing building/structure, it is located within a group of existing buildings on the farm and the conversion would not have a significant impact on the character of the area. In principle the conversion of the building to tourism accommodation is considered acceptable.”

Threemilewater Alliance Alderman Tom Campbell proposed approval of the application, seconded by Macedon party colleague Councillor Billy Webb MBE.

Permission was granted after 10 councillors voted in favour with Airport DUP Cllr Matthew Magill voting against.


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