David and Victoria Beckham risk row with locals with plans for sauna next to controversial lake at £6m Cotswolds estate

THE Beckhams risk riling their neighbours as they plan to build a sauna next to their controversial lake.

David and Victoria have been making big plans to transform their £6million Cotswolds estate.

But they've so far faced challenges on getting the lake over the line after planning officials blocked the bid to protect a bird habitat.

They don't need planning permission from the sauna because it's classified as temporary – but it's yet another construction neighbours are having to face.

The sauna will be just yards away from the jetty at the side of the enormous lake.

It will be settled in the midst of woodland to offer a picturesque relaxation spot.


The couple have put in a planning application to West Oxfordshire District Council for a mammoth stretch of water, nearly 3000 m2, and with a depth of four metres at their Grade II-listed building in Great Tew.

But local residents are furious with their plans to construct a giant lake at their luxury country home calling it "ugly", "monstrous" and "out of keeping" with the posh area.

Local resident Sue Jones wrote a letter of objection saying: "I've lived locally for much of my life and I feel I must object to this monstrous looking plan. There is no reason for anyone to feel the need to build such an ugly and frankly out-of-keeping with the area body of water.

"It will have a bad affect on the local wildlife which will lose important feeding habitat. Can't people just be happy with the beautiful landscape they have instead of always tinkering with things?"



The new addition hit a stumbling block after an ecology report said it threatened "priority species".

If it is able to go ahead, it will create a classic English meadow scene, with the lake surrounded by dozens of different types of grass, wildflowers, shrubs, bushes and trees.

But fellow resident Charlotte Waddington has also slammed the proposals saying that the lake will be taking their natural spring water and add to the pollution issues, with the water table in the area already affected by development at the neighbouring Soho Farmhouse.

She wrote: "We object to these plans for the following reasons – we were not notified about the planning application – where [and] when were these notices posted?

"We live very close to this new build site and object strongly to the siting of yet another new huge (4 metres deep) new lake – Soho House already have 3.



"How are they proposing to fill this lake? If yet another bore hole (Soho Farmhouse) is drilled down it will of course affect the water table.

"[We have] been fed for hundreds of years by natural springs, which are now being impacted by these new water features. We are getting less water and it is being polluted."


The £6.15m property already has a ‘fairytale garden’ designed by Chelsea Flower Show winner Marcus Barnett, which includes a pergola, "natural swimming pond" – using water recycled from the main house – and a fruit orchard of plum, pear, crab apple, wild cherry and witch hazel trees.

The lake will also be raised around the banks to give the family more privacy.

The application adds that the lake will "improve the landscape both aesthetically and in terms of biodiversity, whilst also adding to the enjoyment of the family."

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