Couple renovate farmhouse into dream home only to discover it could be

first_imgHoward and Louise Nicholson’s house before their painstaking restorationCredit:Sheffield Star/SWNS Howard and Louise Nicholson's house before their painstaking restoration The Nicholson family, who own a civil engineering business, are now “in limbo” when it comes to the future of where they live and do not know what will happen next.Mrs Nicholson said: “When we got the letter, it said, ‘we realise that you will be distressed’ which is just more of an understatement than they’ll ever realise.”There was a meeting about it when we came back but they couldn’t give any answers. When we asked questions about what we might be able to do, they couldn’t tell us anything because it’s just a proposed route.”We asked if we could build another house on a different part of the land we own which doesn’t interfere with the route but they had no idea.”A final decision on whether or not the new route will go ahead is due by the end of the year. A couple who have spent thousands of pounds renovating a Grade II listed farmhouse have been told the property could be demolished to make way for the new HS2 line.Louise Nicholson and her husband Howard bought the property for £200,000 in 2012 and lived in a caravan while they spent a six-figure sum restoring the 16th century house while complying with building regulations.But the couple, who have four daughters, now say they are “completely powerless” after being told that the home could be demolished under the revised route for the new high-speed rail line.Mrs Nicholson, 43, even questioned whether HS2 bosses had been aware that their home, in Aston, near Rotherham, South Yorkshire, was on the new route, along with several other historic buildings. When we got the letter, it said, ‘we realise that you will be distressed’ which is just more of an understatement that they’ll ever realiseLouise Nicholsoncenter_img She said: “They didn’t even know we existed. They just thought it was a stables. We are completely powerless. No one can give us any answers. They don’t care because it is a national thing.”One of the questions we have asked at an HS2 meeting is, because we are in a conservation area, will planning laws be relaxed? They said they couldn’t answer that because the route is only proposed.”Major changes have been made to the intended HS2 route through South Yorkshire after rail bosses scrapped plans for a new station in Meadowhall, just outside Sheffield, in favour of a “spur” into Sheffield city centre – a decision officials claim will save £1bn.But the intended new route running from the Mansfield area in Nottinghamshire, up to Wakefield, West Yorkshire, is due to affect homes and businesses in South Yorkshire areas such as Bramley, Aston and Swallownest, Barnburgh, Mexborough and Denaby. An HS2 Ltd spokesman said: “We expect the Secretary of State to make a decision on the proposed route later this year. Should he decide to adopt our recommendations, then a public consultation will be held in order to allow local stakeholders and affected communities the opportunity to comment on the proposals.”We are committed to helping local residents and communities through this period of uncertainty and would encourage anyone who would like further information about the project to contact our 24 hour help desk.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more