We have built this place over the last 11 years into a vibrant off grid smallholding in the foothills of the Preseli in West Wales. The gardens and buildings sit on a 3.5 acre plot, with a spruce plantation behind it, and the property is south facing. There is an additional 3 acre parcel of woodland a short walk away which is part of this property. In addition, the property benefits from part ownership of the Hydro turbine, which is the main power supply for the Ecovillage. After maintenance costs, Plas Helyg is entitled to one ninth of the Feed In Tariff income from the turbine.
Currently the property has no fewer than 3 roundhouses, a timber barn, and 2 cob greenhouses – as well as a little straw bale eco-hut.
The main pink roundhouse is the primary living space, with sporting water piped in, electricity from both a solar array and the hydro, as well as a landline and internet. It is currently divided into a living space, a bedroom, a kitchen and an office. The timber barn houses 2 further bedrooms, as well as housing a very efficient solar thermal shower, with a small wood burner which provides hot water back up. There is also a washing machine in this room.
The little eco-hut is the 4th sleeping space. with underfloor heating making it very nice, cosy and private.
One of the other roundhouses is a funky stable, currently used for horses but has also been used for sheep. The smallest roundhouse is used as a willow storage area.
The gardens comprise a large soft fruit and orchard area, including blackcurrants, redcurrant, gooseberries as well as tayberries and Jerusalem artichoke beds. It is fenced to also house chickens and currently supports 2 bee colonies. There is a large garden area under cultivation, with strawberry beds, herbs, as well as raised vegetable beds. There are compost bins round the back. The smaller cob greenhouse has a very productive peach tree and a grapevine, and is the main propagation area. The larger cob greenhouse has a cherry tree, an almond tree, as well as seasonal veg.
The land around the buildings and gardens is planted with nut trees, comfrey patches, a large variety of native trees, bee plants and hedgerows, and is a haven for birds and wildlife.
The broadleaf woodland has a hazel coppice as well other mature trees, and is very suitable for firewood or crafts and building. It has easy access via a small trackway.
Any prospective purchaser can either apply for the pink roundhouse to become the main dwelling, or they can submit revised plans under the existing planning permission to build a 4 bed property of their own design, as full permission comes with this smallholding.
At the Ecovillage any resident needs to live in a sustainable way, providing some of their living from the land. At Plas Helyg, this is already in place, with the productive gardens, fruit trees, willow coppice (£1,500 value of willow per year) as well as the value of the water, electricity and firewood. This aspect of the Ecovillage life doesn’t need to be daunting – the vendor will advise and support any new owner through everything they need to know. And with no bills, this makes this a very sustainable property to live in.
NB outside work is also fine!