Berlin horse farm in dispute with town

A Berlin couple is working to reshape property as horse farm, but town is rethinking permission amid complaints by neighbors

The owners of Maplewood Farm, Tamara and Archibald Johnston, hoped that the tons of dirt they trucked onto their 20-acre property in Berlin would help them realize their dream of raising and training horses. Instead, the dirt has only brought them trouble.

Since November, when Berlin’s building inspector ordered the Johnstons to stop building an indoor riding arena and moving earth around their property, Maplewood Farm has been a source of controversy in one of the most rural towns in the region. At issue is whether the Johnstons were within their rights last year when they rebuilt the arena, cleared trees, and then trucked in fill to make sections of their land suitable for growing hay and pasturing animals.

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