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Surrey farmer who built illegal castle starts demolition after nine-year battle

After nine years of fighting to save his mock-Tudor castle, a Surrey farmer has been ordered to dismantle the building.

Alice   Singleton

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Alice   Singleton
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Mr Fidler hid his castle behind hay bales for four years
Mr Fidler hid his castle behind hay bales for four years

After fighting to keep his ’secret’ castle for nine-years, Robert Fidler has given in after being told he could face a prison sentence.

 

It has been reported the cattle farmer has been given until June 6 to entirely demolish his illegally-built mock Tudor mansion.

 

The Surrey farmer built the four-bedroom property at Honeycrock Farm without planning permission in 2002, and hid it behind hay bales for four years.

 

Demolition

 

Mr Fidler began demolition in March, according to the BBC.

 

A petition to ’let the castle stay’ to be delivered to Reigate and Banstead Borough Council has been signed 1,904 times, but in a statement on from the council, a spokesman said ’the High Court order requires Mr Fidler to have completed demolition by June 6, 2016’.

 

The statement said: "We continue to monitor the situation at Honeycrock Farm. The unlawful building has been reduced to first floor level with some works to the ground floor level as well.

 

"We have already given Mr Fidler advice about the options available to him for providing alternative accommodation in existing lawful buildings on his site."

 

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