Monthly Archives: February 2016

Nice try



The retention of a building ‘for feed preparation and as a shelter (for agricultural workers)’ on a farm in Leicestershire was denied a lawful development certificate after an inspector was unable to conclude that the building was required for the purposes of agriculture (DCS Number 400-010-680).

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What difference does it make?



Two recent cases have set the team wondering about the rationale behind the wording of the GPDO.

In (DCS Number 400-010-438) permission for the residential conversion of a building in Devon under Class P, Part 3, Schedule 2 of the GPDO was denied because it had not been used solely for a storage or distribution centre use. The inspector noted that the building was being utilised for storage purposes in connection with the appellant’s own business, for paid storage purposes by others, and for some minor domestic storage. He held that some of those purposes, such as the storage paid for by others, could be said to fall within Use Class B8. However, other purposes were connected to the appellant’s permaculture activities on the wider site. This would not fall under the ambit of Use Class B8, but was storage which was ancillary to the primary use of the site for the purposes of permaculture. The building was therefore being used for a mixture of purposes and the conversion was not one that is permitted by Class P of the 2015 Order.

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‘A dual-pitched roof’ means one dual-pitched roof, not two dual-pitched roofs



A householder in Buckinghamshire failed to convince an inspector that a curtilage swimming pool building would be permitted development, the inspector ruling that ‘a dual-pitched roof’ excludes buildings with two dual-pitched roofs (DCS Number 400-010-392).

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The perils of good neighbourliness



An appellant in Middlesex found himself with an unlawful extension after falling foul of the prior application procedure regulations (DCS Number 200-004-604).

The appellant proposed a 6m deep single storey extension to his semi-detached house under the prior application procedure and no objections were received from neighbours. A No Objection response was issued by default once 42 days had elapsed, an inspector recorded, and was therefore permitted development. The appellant then started to build the extension but a neighbour raised a concern about its position in relation to their shared access. Accordingly, the appellant decided to set in part of the side wall of the extension adjacent to the shared drive by some 600mm for a distance of 2.84m from the end elevation. In addition, the internal arrangement was altered, and a window was omitted from the end elevation and was instead inserted into the side elevation facing the shared access. In order to regularize the development the appellant then submitted an application for a certificate of lawful development.

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Did the earth move for you?



Objectors to the retention of a 15m high wind turbine on a Staffordshire farm were concerned that vibrations from the turbine would disturb the breeding of brown hares (DCS Number 400-010-313). The inspector recorded, however, that a report produced by Keele University on the likely impact of ground-borne vibrations from turbines concluded that the level of vibrations from wind turbines is so small that only the most sophisticated instrumentation can reveal their presence and they are almost impossible to detect. He acknowledged that animals have heightened senses but found nothing to suggest that a single wind turbine of the scale erected would have a material impact on the breeding pattern of the brown hare. He therefore concluded that the turbine did not present an unacceptable risk to local biodiversity.

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Some practice points



In granting permission for a crematorium in a Lakeland area of outstanding natural beauty (DCS Number 200-004-572) an inspector referred to the requirements of the Cremation Act 1902. This Act advises that sites should be at least 200 yards from any dwelling unless the owner, lessee or occupier has given their consent in writing, and at least 50 yards from a public highway. He reasoned that whilst this would not necessarily preclude urban sites there would seem to be support for the contention that crematoria should be situated within rural locations and in all likelihood within the open countryside.

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