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Couple is Forced to Apply For Permits For Daughter's Playhouse

Let's see now, what crazy U.K. building news can we dig up today? Well, there's always the fun and games involved with stodgy local councils that make their residents do weird things. Take the case of Richard and Olivia Gent, who wanted nothing more than to build a cute little playhouse—called a Wendy house—as a birthday present for their cute little three-year-old daughter, Abigail. The structure measures six-by-eight feet and seven feet tall, and was handmade by Gent himself.

The Gents placed the playhouse in the paddocks right on their property, where it stood cool, calm, and collected for three months. Then, one day out of the blue, they received a letter from the borough council stating that if they wanted to keep the thing up, they'd need to move it into the garden or apply for planning permission to keep it in the paddock. Why? "Due to previous planning conditions, when approval was granted for a barn conversion and a change of use of land for grazing of recreational horses," said one council spokeswoman. "Due to the restricted application site...it was considered important to ensure that no additional development is carried out without the permission of the Local Planning Authority." Ultimately, Gent opted for Option: Garden, but not without very clearly stating, "I really thought the world had gone mad."

· Heavy-handed council workers order couple to apply for planning permission... for their daughter's Wendy house [Daily Mail]