A millionaire businessman is facing having to tear down a building, skateboard park and tennis court which he built without permission in a protected south Devon beauty spot.
Sean Thomas, founder of White Stuff a clothing and lifestyle brand, built a two-storey double garage on farmland behind his home at Gerston Point, which sits on the edge of the Kingsbridge estuary in the South Hams.
He completed the work, which is in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB), without first applying for planning permission.
South Hams District Council were alerted to the buildings after members of the public spotted them from adjoining land and construction traffic was see clogging the lanes.
Mr Thomas and his wife submitted a retrospective application for change of use to the land, including a carport and storage building.
But planners have now rejected the application and forwarded it to the enforcement team, who will issue the business owner with notice to remove the buildings and return the land to its former condition.
Mr Thomas has eight weeks to appeal against the decision.
Cathy Koo, vice chair of the South Hams Society, said: “We welcome the decision that South Hams District Council has made to enforce this retrospective application, nobody is above the law, planning permission is in place for a reason.”
Mr Thomas told The Daily Telegraph he appreciates the “sensitivities” among some local people who feel “protective” over the area.
“I am again putting my trust in the professional advice I’m receiving and the planning process, which has some way to run. We will all have to wait and see what the eventual outcome is,” he said.