Development of Machynlleth’s ex-Travis Perkins site has stalled as the cost of preserving the existing barns risks making the project ‘unviable’.

The 1800s old timber yard on Heol Y Doll is set to be developed into four homes and 16 flats.

But Barcud housing association has hit a stumbling block due to the huge costs of preserving two stone barns in a “poor state of repair”, “as far as possible”.

The planning application requires Barcud to keep most of the stonewalling whilst removing two buildings' ends for “improved road visibility”.

In an email to councillors, Barcud senior development officer Geraint Roberts, said: “Retaining parts of the existing structure where so much of it requires replacement is problematic and is adding significant costs to the development, affecting its viability.”

The site and buildings aren’t themselves listed, but do sit in the Machynlleth Conservation Area.

The two buildings which would be fully demolished if the amended plans went ahead
The two buildings which would be fully demolished if the amended plans went ahead (Barcud)

In response, councillor Ann MacGarry said: “Everyone I've asked in town would like the development to go ahead as soon as possible and don't feel the walls are worth keeping.

“This includes people who have said they value keeping old buildings.”

Mayor Jeremy Paige said “we absolutely need more housing”, whilst Cllr Michael Williams blamed “lack of available land” as the issue.

Powys County Council planning officers said: “Officers have met with the applicant’s agent to discuss the extent of demolition, which officers consider currently falls outside the scope of the previous planning consent. 

“Officers are currently awaiting on further information from the applicant. To date, not further information has been received.”