'Crazy Frog' mural allowed to stay despite never gaining planning approval

A mural of 'Crazy Frog' and other frogs on a wall in front of a house
The 'Crazy Frog' mural is a homage to the name of the house, 'Froghoop Cottage' that the couple bought in 1985 (Image credit: Google Earth)

A couple have been told they can keep their mural of 'Crazy Frog' on a wall in front of their house, despite breaching planning rules.

John, 63, and Caroline, 50, painted the mural of Crazy Frog, a 3D animated creature that featured on numerous singles, most notably the number 1 'Axel F' in 2005.

Although the home lies within a conservation area and the couple did not gain planning permission, Perth and Kinross council said the painting can remain as the painting brought "no significant planning harm" and it would not be "proportionate or practical" to take enforcement action.

Why did the homeowners paint the crazy frog?

The couple painted a wall in front of their house with frogs to pay homage to the name of the property, 'Froghoop Cottage'.

John, a former joiner, gave the home this name when he and his partner bought it in 1985. 

They finished painting the wall seven months ago, but the couple never sought planning for the mural.

Investigation made after complaint submitted

Despite the painting being completed seven months ago the couple have only recently heard that a complaint was submitted regarding the mural.

The couple said they were surprised due to the length of time that has passed and that "hundreds" of people had actually given positive comments about the painting. 

John said: "I thought I might get somebody moaning about it but I never heard anything. Then, last week, someone posted a note through my letterbox, saying he'd seen a complaint to the council, and he would like to have a chat.

“The only thing that I could think is I’ve maybe upset somebody in the past – the same reason that someone previously complained about me changing my windows at the house.”

Caroline added: "I suppose I was a bit surprised because of the time that's passed since he had the mural done and it was quite a surprise to get it.

"People we meet in the village, going past, walking the dogs will say, 'Imagine complaining about that'. They didn't consult anyone."

After the complaint was submitted an investigation was carried out by the council into an, "Alleged unauthorised painting within a conservation area".

Errol Parish Church, as seen from a street

The home lies in the Errol Conservation Area, where the Errol Parish Church also lies (Image credit: Google Earth)

Council approve painting despite planning breach

The council investigated the mural and found it did constitute a planning breach, but  allowed the couple to keep it.

This case is unusual as many homeowners have seen their alterations to their home in conservation areas punished such as the Edinburgh pink door row where a woman tried to paint her door pink but was not allowed or else face a £20,000 fine.

A Perth and Kinross council spokesperson said: “The Council as Planning Authority was made aware that a potentially unauthorised painting had been completed on a boundary wall within the Errol conservation area.

"Evidence in regard to the alleged development undertaken was received. It has been determined that development has been undertaken and does constitute development, as defined in Section 26 of the Town and Country Planning (Scotland) Act 1997.

"Planning permission is not in place for the development. The development does not constitute permitted development under Class 3E or 9 of The Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) (Scotland) Order 1992 (as amended)"

However, the council decided not to pursue enforcement action, saying: “The Council agrees that there has been a breach of planning control, however it would not be proportionate or practical for the Planning Authority to use its discretionary powers to take formal enforcement action.”

Joseph Mullane
News Editor

News Editor Joseph has previously written for Today’s Media and Chambers & Partners, focusing on news for conveyancers and industry professionals.  Joseph has just started his own self build project, building his own home on his family’s farm with planning permission for a timber frame, three-bedroom house in a one-acre field. The foundation work has already begun and he hopes to have the home built in the next year. Prior to this he renovated his family's home as well as doing several DIY projects, including installing a shower, building sheds, and livestock fences and shelters for the farm’s animals. Outside of homebuilding, Joseph loves rugby and has written for Rugby World, the world’s largest rugby magazine.