In recent months, both Earth Matters blogger Shea and myself have reported on a super-nifty cave house in Festus, Missouri. This particular home has been granted the proper permits, boasts a staple of domesticity, granite countertops, and seems, from what I’ve read and seen in photos, to be a totally inhabitable space.

Now, in Brighton, England, there’s news that an eco-eccentric named Hilaire Purbrick has been kicked out of the 7 foot–wide cave he’s lived in for the last 16 years. The reason? An absence of fire exits.

Purbrick, 45, is battling it out with town officials who believe that his domicile is a health and safety hazard. Unsurprisingly, Purbrick, who lives in the bunker on a rented plot of land that he gardens/dines off of, is no stranger to town authority feather ruffling. He’s also been accused of operating a renegade vegetable shop and keeping chickens without proper permission. And then there’s this: Several years ago, Purbrick was responsible for a beekeeping mishap that involved a misused sex toy (an exotic feathered "tickler") and thousands of bees descending on a residential street in Brighton. Seriously, I could not make this stuff up.

Purbrick’s unusual digs were hand-dug on an allotment, a term used to describe government-owned land that’s rented out to citizens for gardening and growing crops. This greenthumbed caveman, it turns out, is sharing his allotment with over 20 gardeners who grow veggies and flowers on the land. Essentially, it's an open-air commune with a cave.

After Purbrick’s appeal to keep his home was rejected by a UK judge, he announced that he will be taking the matter to the European Courts, citing human rights violations.

Good riddance. 

Via [The Telegraph] and [CNBC]

Image via The Telegraph

Matt Hickman ( @mattyhick ) writes about design, architecture and the intersection between the natural world and the built environment.

Brit cave-dweller gets the boot
Greenthumbed 'eco-warrior' Hilaire Purbrick gets evicted from his subterranean lair due to lack of fire exits.