United star Gary Neville wants to build an eco mansion

FOOTBALL star Gary Neville wants to extend his Harwood estate — by building Bolton’s first zero-carbon house.

The Manchester United defender, aged 34, has earmarked green belt land next to his current home for the state-of-the-art eco mansion. The building will have a wind turbine and a ground source heat pump and energy produced from the wind turbine will be used to power his neighbouring property, helping to reduce its carbon footprint.

Make Architects, who have designed the innovative house, confirmed that talks between themselves and the council have been ongoing for the last couple of months and that a planning application is expected to be submitted early in the new year.

A spokesman added: “For the last 12 months Make has been working with the design team on a fantastic new home, which, if granted planning permission will be an ideal example of sustainability for the North West.”

Even though the development would be on green belt land, it is understood that Neville is hoping to use planning laws that allow the building of new country houses providing the designs are “truly outstanding and ground-breaking” and reflect the “highest standards in contemporary architecture”.

Bury-born Neville impressed members of Bolton Council’s planning committee this week by giving them a knowledgeable presentation.

A council source said: “He was very impressive and is very enthusiastic about the project. He did most of the presentation himself and clearly knows a lot about the issues he was talking about.”

The design of the building, which is partially covered by the landscape, is also thought to be eye-catching, with a large central kitchen the focal point of the property. Various wings — described as looking like petals if the property was viewed from above — house bedrooms, living rooms and entertainment rooms.

The England star, whose brother Phil plays for Premier League rivals Everton and lives in Lostock, bought the entire 18th century farming hamlet, off Tottington Road, five years ago so he could convert in it into a 12-bedroom mansion for himself and wife, Emma.

Bolton Council confirmed they had been in talks with Neville over the plans.

A spokesman said: “An application has not been received to date, however there have been some initial discussions. Should an application be submitted it will be dealt with in the usual way through the planning process.”

In March, Neville enraged Bolton Wanderers fans by growing a huge hedge that spells out MUFC at his Harwood mansion.

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