Published: 00:01, 10 February 2019
A Lord of the Rings-inspired hobbit house could be used as a holiday let if new plans are approved.
The eye-catching structure, which is to be installed at a home in Hastingleigh outside Ashford, is costing £40,000.
Caroline Gilson, who runs holiday lets from the Old Sawmill in the village, already has planning permission to use it as a garden room, but she now hopes Ashford Borough Council (ABC) will allow her to use it as a holiday let.
She has commissioned Matt Wright of Hobbit House Ltd to construct the building, which features a sleeping area, TV, toilet and shower.
It is currently being manufactured at a workshop in Mansfield, Nottinghamshire, and will then be taken to Hastingleigh on the back of a lorry once completed.
“I like to be different,” Mrs Gilson said.
“I won’t be using it straight away as a holiday cottage - I have a teenage daughter who wants her own space and she will be using it to start with.
“We are looking to do something unusual.
“Planning is quite strict where we are because we are in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, but it will blend in well.”
Mrs Gilson expects the home - similar to Bilbo Baggins' Bag End - will be completed within the next couple of months.
Installation in Hastingleigh will take between two to five days.
It will go at the rear of a stable block at Mrs Gilson's home, which is made up of numerous farm buildings, including a cattle shed, which have been converted to residential and holiday lets.
In the planning application submitted to ABC, it says no foundations will be needed as Hobbit House Ltd structures are mobile and can lifted by crane onto the back of a lorry and moved.
The 'eco-friendly' structure is made from high-density polyethylene (HDPE) which is formed from recycled waste plastic.
It will be covered with a grass roof and will not be visible from the road or neighbouring properties.
Mr Wright, who launched his business in April, says his homes - which are guaranteed to last 125 years - have attracted strong interest.
The firefighter said: “I am a fan of The Lord of the Rings and I wanted to do something that was eco-friendly and blends into the landscape.
“We have had lot lots of enquiries.”
Adult-sized hobbit houses start from £7,995, with playhouses from £4,800.
Mrs Gilson’s hobbit house will be another quirky addition to her home, which is close to the village’s St Mary the Virgin’s Church.
It will join the chrome Gizmo Snowdog she bought at a charity auction last year.
To view the plans, visit www.ashford.gov.uk and search for the 18/01858/AS scheme.
It is not the only hobbit house in Kent, with one in Sheerness being nominated for an award.