Plans for PM’s house to be kept secret

On Tuesday Flen district council approved the location for Göran Persson's new house beside Lake Båven in Södermanland.

In theory that means the prime minister and his wife, Anitra Steen, can now apply for planning permission for the manor-style residence to be built on land which they bought a year ago.

But Sweden’s security police, Säpo, has said that it wants the plans to remain secret.

“This is to do with the state’s and the prime minister’s security,” said Jakob Larsson, the information officer at Säpo.

He told Svenska Dagbladet that it is extremely uncommon to request secrecy around building plans.

“We only do it in exceptional cases. And this is such a case,” he added.

According to SvD, the house is to consist of one main building with two wings. It will be topped by a particular kind of roof modelled on a style used in the 18th century.

But the main selling point for the couple, who paid 12.5 million kronor for the land, is said to be its proximity to Lake Båven.

Unfortunately that may also scupper the plans, secret or not. The local council said on Wednesday that it plans to extend the protection area around the lake from 100 metres to 300 metres.

The planned location for the prime minister’s new house is just 130 metres from the lake, but Tuesday’s decision to approve the spot was only passed by 6 votes to 5.

Anders Iverbo, who voted against the proposal, told Swedish Radio that “the decision goes against the so-called Båven plans” to prevent building close to the lake.

Sources: Svenska Dagbladet, SR, Corren