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Man told to leave self-built mud hut in London woodland

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Media captionDaniel Pike, 28, built the hut out of clay he found at the Merry Hill Wood site, near Watford

A man who built a mud hut in a London woodland has been told to leave the site after living there for four years.

Daniel Pike, 28, built the hut out of clay he found at the Merry Hill Wood site, near Watford.

As well as the hut, which has solar panels, he has built an outdoor shelter with a seating area and cooking facilities.

The Woodland Trust said if he continued living there it would set a precedent that could then harm the environment.

Mr Pike said it would be a "violation of justice" if he got evicted.

Image caption He said it would be a "violation of justice" if he got evicted

"It's just so peaceful - I have freedom. I can live without being coerced by any force," he added.

The Woodland trust said it was sympathetic to Mr Pike and was "working hard" to find a solution that worked for both parties.

Gareth Hopkins, Woodland Trust site manager for Merry Hill Wood, said: "As custodians of the woodland we have to look at the possible impact his activities could have on this site and at the rest of our 1000 plus sites across the UK.

"We adhere to strict conservation policies with regards to our woods in order to conserve and protect them in the long term. Allowing Mr Pike to remain in the wood could set a precedent for this type of occupation to occur across all our sites."

Image caption He has also built a shelter with cooking facilities
Image caption The hut is close to a stream which runs through the wood

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