SHORT SHRIFT FOR TV HOMES SHOW
County housing boss: we see crisis, they just see opportunity:
ATV company received a frosty reception as it tried to recruit a Plaid Cymru councillor to help promote buying holiday homes in Gwynedd. The team behind the show Fantasy Homes By The Sea contacted Gwynedd cabinet member for housing Cllr Craig ab Iago in the hope he’d get involved.
The show sees house hunters head to the coast in search of their dream home.
Participants are also shown homes let out by their owners, to give them an insight into how much profit they could make on their potential property.
The production company said Gwynedd council gave the show permission to film in the area but Cllr ab Iago was not impressed. And he said it was the last thing a county in the grip of a housing crisis needed to be promoting.
He said: “They’re making a programme about somebody coming here and buying our houses when we’ve got a massive housing crisis going on in Gwynedd.
“It’s like a different world. I’m the Cabinet Member for Housing so I know what’s going on in Gwynedd and the crisis that we’ve got here and somebody’s coming from somewhere else and sees it as an opportunity.
“It’s so frustrating that’s happening. It doesn’t even address the main issue that we can’t even afford our own houses.
“The only housing problem they address is somebody who doesn’t have a home by the sea.
“It’s annoying but it also makes you feel a bit helpless. Where they are, they don’t even see that this is an issue.”
Fantasy Homes By The Sea will be shown on UKTV channel Really later this year. The team is due to film on the Snowdonia coastline, near Barmouth, in the first week of October.
Cllr ab Iago believes added: “Their awareness of how it’s an issue for us is so low that they don’t see a problem in asking for my help.
“The tone of the email is one that it’s something I’d obviously support and it’s an opportunity for our beaches to be on telly. The reality is I don’t want you buying any more of our beach side homes, we can’t even home the people who are here.
“TV programmes are not being made for us, they’re being made for somebody somewhere else. They’re made for people with money.”
The programme is being co-produced by Hat-Trick Productions and Kalooki Pictures.
A production company spokesman confirmed that full permission to film was granted by Gwynedd Council.
They said: “Fantasy Homes By The Sea is a series in which we help people find a property to fulfil their desire of relocating to the British seaside.
“They might want to move to be nearer their families, or for their work or return to a place they have always loved and sometimes previously lived and be part of that community.
“Before filming begins we always ensure that permission is granted by the relevant councils for filming to take place in all council-controlled areas.”
● Cllr Craig ab Iago and, main picture, Barmouth