HEREFORDSHIRE councillors have approved plans for a new home for the manager of a local fishing tourism hotspot.

Simon Bozward, who wants to build a house and garage at Docklow Pools off the A44 Worcester road near Leominster, said the lack of privacy was having an impact on his life.

The 140 acre commercial fishery site includes converted farm buildings and 52 holiday units for visitors as well as the Fisherman’s Arms pub where Mr Bozward currently lives and manages the business.

Speaking to the planning committee on January 15, Mr Bozward said the site was established in 1972 by his parents and had lived there all his life.

But that he now needed a separation between his work and home life.

“Since then the business has grown significantly and with it, so has my role and responsibilities within the business,” he said.

“Docklow Pools is now arguably the largest fishing holiday complex in the country. It is a significant employer and contributor to the local economy.

“Most days during the season there are over 150 guests on site, therefore it’s imperative that I am also on site to attend to any issues or faults tha tmay arise from residents and staff at any time of day.

“It is hard work and long hours which is why it is essential I have some degree of separation between my work and home life.

“This is pretty much impossible at the moment considering the bar, restaurant, coffee shop, reception, office, beer cellar, commercial kitchens and five letting rooms are all housed in the same building I live in.”

He said planning officers suggested he live off site and employ a site manager to live at the pub and take on his responsibilities.

“Any new site manager would be highly unlikely to put up with the living conditions I have,” he said.

“Living by the bar also puts a strain on my relationship. Lack of privacy and garden space are always an issue, particularly during the summer months.”

Mr Bozward said the parish council and many local residents supported his proposals.

Ward councillor John Harrington said the site was fantastic and a well-run enterprise and the applicant deserved a quality of life.

“I think there is absolutely a need for a separate house.”

Councillor Bernard Hunt said the whole facility was "a little jewel in the crown of north Herefordshire" and proposed granting permission for the scheme going against the professional advice from officers.

“I can’t understand why we are being asked to turn it down,” he said.

“There were no objections of any sort from anywhere.

“There were 25 letters of support raising all sorts of points.”

The planning committee unanimously approved the proposals.