AFTER decades of trying to get planning permission – including two failed appeals – a stable block in Ponthirwaun can now be turned into a home.

The father of current applicant Sarah Fitz-Gibbon had been trying to build a home on his land at Blaencoed Stables since the 1970s with a change of use first put in for the stable block in 1994.

Ceredigion County Council’s development management control committee went against an officer’s recommendation to refuse the application and gave the go-ahead to the creation of an affordable home.

The extensive planning history had always referred to an open market house but committee members found the proposal for an affordable dwelling more acceptable.

Planning agent Matt Edwards said that Ms Fitz-Gibbon wanted to convert the upper level of the existing building into a two bedroom home for herself while the ground floor would be used as storage for her gardening business equipment.

Her father had “gifted” the building and land to her so she could escape the rental market he told the committee.

Concerns raised about access visibility had been resolved with the highways department with the moving of road signs to be paid for by the applicant.

Local member Cllr Lyndon Lloyd said the previous applications were “going back to a different age” with no talk of affordable housing.

Ponthirwaun was the only one of the six villages in his ward without an affordable home he added.

Cllr Mark Strong said he feared approving the application would “set a precedent” and could lead to the building of sheds or stables to later be turned into houses.

Cllr Peter Davies proposed that the application be approved, adding: “I do not believe it would be harmful to the appearance of the area, I believe there’s a planning gain here.”

All but one councillor voted in favour of approval.