PLANS to place six shepherd huts at a workspace hub in a Cotswold village look set to be refused.

Coombe End Estate wants permission to set up the structures on land south east of Elkstone Studios in Elkstone for mixed retail and community use.

Elkstone Studios owners describe their site as a thriving workspace hub consisting of immaculate farmyard conversions with a food hall, cafe, retail space, fitness, event space and EV charging.

Their latest proposals have been referred to Cotswold District Council’s planning committee at the request of Cllr Julia Judd (C, Ermin)

She says the small mobile sphere huts are not significant structures and the commercial enterprise aligns with the existing development and commercial offerings.

Elkstone Studios is already established as a popular shopping destination, by locals and passing traffic on the A417 dual carriageway which is only a matter of yards away.

“It cannot be said that visitor numbers will increase incrementally, as people already visit Elkstone Studios for other existing benefits, the proposal just expands upon the choice.

“Furthermore, the argument that the proposal is in an ‘unsustainable location in the countryside’ does not make sense, Elkstone Studios as a special food outlet already exists!”

However, council officers have recommended refusing the proposals as the site is located in a rural area outside the village boundary and would constitute retail development in an unsustainable location in the countryside.

The existing commercial uses of the buildings at Elkstone Studios have been provided through either the prior notification procedure or the granting of planning permission as the beneficial reuse of existing rural buildings, they said.

In contrast, the proposed siting of six shepherd huts to provide uses more appropriate to a retail centre, in a location that has very limited access by public transport, and not readily accessible by either pedestrians or cyclists, would be contrary to planning policies.

Councillors debated the proposals earlier today, July 10.