A controversial plan to build a futuristic mansion in the Herefordshire countryside has finally been thrown out.

Built partly into a hillside near the village of Ullingswick between Bromyard and Hereford, the six-bedroom Flow House was to be a family home for a local couple, Mr and Mrs Perry.

The initial planning application submitted in summer 2020 described its heating and power system as the first of its kind in the UK, enabling it to be largely self-sufficient in power, while extensive landscaped grounds were to include a new perry pear orchard.


Plans for the curved-profile, flat-roofed house also showed a cinema room, gym, bar, wine room, swimming pool, jacuzzi and carp pond.

The proposed Flow House, which will not now be builtThe proposed Flow House, which will not now be built (Image: application)

National planning rules only permit new homes in open countryside if they meet specific criteria – in this case, that they demonstrate “outstanding design”.

It was this issue that was to stymie the bid over the coming years.

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In September 2021 councillors on the county planning committee refused the initial application on the grounds that the design was not outstanding enough and would harm the surrounding landscape.

A revised application then included a report by an independent design review panel, which “confirms that the design is outstanding”, according to a planning officer’s report when the proposal again came before councillors in February last year.

But again they were insufficiently impressed and rejected the proposal by a one-vote margin.


The Perrys then appealed against the refusal to the government’s Planning Inspectorate, which took up the case in November but has only now issued its decision.

Planning inspector M Aqbal dismissed the appeal, concluding that their proposal “does not reach the standard of design” required in national planning rules, “and would harm the character and appearance of the area”.

Short of an appeal to ministers, this effectively ends the Flow House plan.