Marcus Kravis applies for a caravan building permit
A LOCAL politician has defended himself following accusations of hypocrisy for breaking the rules.
Cllr Marcus Kravis, who sits on Somerset West and Taunton Council, installed six static caravans on a pitch at the Blue Anchor pub in Watchet without applying for a change of use permit.
After being charged with ‘Caravangate’, Mr Kravis said he set up the vans at the site before being a councilor and out of desperation at the inaction of a now defunct council.
He is now seeking retroactive clearance from the District Council, where he holds the asset management and economic development portfolio. A decision will be made tomorrow (Thursday 26 May).
A West Somerset area source said: “It’s Boris Johnson and Partygate – admittedly on a smaller scale.
“But Marcus Kravis is a hypocrite just like the prime minister.
“He’s responsible for making the rules and he broke them with this episode of Caravangate.
“He should resign or withdraw the caravans immediately. But I’m pretty sure that won’t happen.
“It’s a terrible example for the people of the neighborhood.”
Before planners consider his retrospective planning application tomorrow, Mr Kravis said: “I see what they (the accuser) are saying.
“But the caravans were in place before I was an adviser.
“They were put in place when we had to close the pub.
“It was in 2018 as an emergency situation because there was a possibility that someone would lose their livelihood.
“The caravans were dumped there in a hurry without planning permission.
“We couldn’t plan because of the situation with the coastal road.”
Mr Kravis criticized the “lack of action” of the old West Somerset Council, which was abolished before the creation of Somerset West and Taunton Council.
He added: “I would put the caravans back there if I was in the same position.
“There was a lack of action from West Somerset Council – as a direct result of what happened I decided to become a district councillor.
“We are using the caravans as holiday accommodation, which is desperately needed there and will help extend the season by ensuring there is enough capacity there.”