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Demolition experts arrive at Captain Tom's daughter's home to start knocking down illegal spa
30 January 2024, 10:59 | Updated: 30 January 2024, 17:58
Captain Tom spa pool demolition expected to begin as scaffolding goes up
Demolition experts have arrived at Captain Tom's daughter's home to start knocking down the family's illegal spa.
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A flatbed truck arrived at the property in Marston Moretaine in Bedfordshire on Tuesday morning and drove into the grounds through a gate at the rear of the plot.
Workers in orange hi-vis jackets were seen removing poles and slabs of concrete as work began on the site.
Hannah Ingram-Moore and her husband Colin lost an appeal against an order to remove the spa building in the grounds of their £1.2m home after a hearing in October.
They were given three months to demolish the building, with the deadline being February 7.
Central Bedfordshire Council said it would be "reviewing the onsite position" the following day, on February 8.
Boxes of equipment were last week seen being removed from the property, ahead of its demolition.
Some of Captain Tom's prized possessions, including his Guinness Book of Records certificate, some paintings, and a model aircraft were also removed.
Ms Ingram-Moore and her husband originally got the spa built after getting permission for an L-shaped charity office for the Captain Tom Foundation.
A year later, in 2022, a retrospective planning application for a C-shaped building containing a spa pool was turned down by Central Bedfordshire Council.
Ms Ingram-Moore argued it was not for the family's benefit because it would also be used to hold cards and gifts from Captain Tom's fans.
It comes after neighbours accused the family of turning the village into a laughing stock.
Frustrated local Ian Knight told the Independent he felt "embarrassed" when people asked about the controversial spa.
“We were proud of what he’s done but now we’re the laughing stock," he said.
“They’ve spoilt everything. It was a good thing what he’s done, and now it’s embarrassing.”
Captain Tom raised nearly £40m for NHS charities during the coronavirus pandemic as he walked laps of his garden.
He went on to be knighted by Queen Elizabeth and died in 2021 aged 100.
His family set up the Captain Tom Foundation, but it is due to close after a Charity Commission probe is concluded.
It launched a statutory inquiry into the charity last year over decisions that "may have generated a significant profit" for a company run by the couple.