PLANS for timber-clad holiday lodges near a beauty spot have been refused because they would be conspicuous in winter.

In September 2009 planners turned down an application for the development at Penvale Lakes, at the foot of the Horseshoe Pass, Llangollen, but the developer appealed against the decision.

The nine lodges would be in a clearing above the existing 12 chalets at the bottom of a valley which is within the Vale of Llangollen and Eglwyseg Historic Landscape, as well as an area of oustanding natural beauty.

Planning inspector Anthony Thickett, who heard the appeal, said existing trees and timber cladding would soften the impact for part of the year.

But he added: “In my view, the siting of the nine structures, each 12 metres by six metres, with the inevitable associated activity, parking and other paraphernalia would result in an unacceptable incursion of built development into this relatively unspoilt hillside.”

He added that lights in the lodges and car headlights would exacerbate the harm to the historic landscape.