Plan for Sidbury alpaca farm given green light

PUBLISHED: 17:55 27 February 2018

Sidbury alpacas.

Sidbury alpacas.

Archant

Plans to build a shop and log cabin at a Sidbury alpaca farm have been given the green light.

Richard with the alpacas.Richard with the alpacas.

Works to build a one-and-a-half storey Scandinavian-style log cabin which includes a shop, reception area and a farm office, can now begin at Bearhouse Alpacas farm in Sancombe Wood.

The plans were submitted on behalf of Richard Harris who runs the farm with his partner Pippa Westall.

The go-ahead means that the couple will now be able to run the business in a house rather than from a on-site mobile home.

The farm was first established as a small enterprise in 2005. Since then it has grown and now has 60 alpacas in 46 acres.

Pippa on a alpaca trek.Pippa on a alpaca trek.

The farm already breeds stock, runs an alpaca stud service and offers alpaca trekking.

It also sells a variety of products such as balls of alpaca wool, alpaca felt shoe/boot insoles, sheets of felt, raw alpaca fleeces, postcards, trekking gift vouchers and other alpaca products such as socks, scarves, gloves and other clothing items.

Pippa said: “It is a massive relief. We are very pleased and are looking forward to starting the building project.

“The house itself should take about three months to build but there is quite a lot of ground work to do, so it could take around five months.”

When she spoke to the Herald previously, Pippa said: “At the moment Richard lives in a mobile home on the site because someone has to be there for the alpacas. They are quite hardy when fully fleeced, but vulnerable in the wet and cold when they have been sheared and when the young are born.

“They need to be kept under cover in bad weather, so have to be moved in and out quite a lot.”

Pippa said there businesses had been doing really well and that they now had bookings up until Autumn.

She added. “People seem to find it calming and therapeutic and some have liked it so much they have come back to do it again. It appeals to locals and holidaymakers of all ages.”

Visit bearhousealpacas.co.uk for more information about the farm.

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