A GRADE II* listed barn and relic of the Industrial Revolution could be turned into unique holiday homes if Blaenau Gwent councillors approve an application next month.

Roundhouse Farm in Nantyglo dates from the late 18th century and houses the Round Towers – the last private castle built in Britain in order to protect industrialists from a potential worker’s revolt.

Now the owners of the farm, which includes a farmhouse, barn and the towers, want to transform part of it into three holiday homes.

The owners have put in an application to turn part of the two-storey stone barn into three holiday units – each across two floors.

Two of the holiday homes will contain an open-plan lounge, kitchen and dining area on the ground floor and two bedrooms and a bathroom on the first floor. The third unit will be smaller and only have one bedroom.

The owners want to refurbish the exterior of the building and replace three windows and create another.

Councillors on Blaenau Gwent council’s planning committee will vote on whether to approve the plans on Thursday January 7 next year.

In a report to the committee, council officers recommend councillors grant planning permission and said it is clear the site “holds the potential for tourism”.

But the council has received one email from the local History and Archaeological Society saying more than 80 of its members are opposed to the plan.

The society said alterations would “destroy the history and archaeology of the site”.

Nantyglo and Blaina town council have also opposed the plan.

But the report said: “There are a number of examples of buildings in the borough that are falling into disrepair to the point of endangering their very existence because a viable use has not been found.

“In my view, supporting this application should be viewed as “enabling development”, a legitimate planning tool to secure the future of a heritage asset.

“The public benefit of securing the future of the building outweighs any negligible “harm” to the original fabric.

“I consider that the carrying out of refurbishment works to a wing of the barn will improve its appearance in keeping with its historic character and in permitting a change of use to holiday units will help to sustain this site of historical interest by providing accommodation for visitors to the area.”