Posts Categorized: Cut-out-and-keep

Never heard of it






In referring to Dunnett Investments Ltd v SSCLG and East Dorset District Council [2016] an inspector dealing with an appeal against the refusal of a certificate of lawfulness to confirm the unfettered A1 retail use of a unit on a retail park in Newcastle has helpfully set out the judge’s summary of the law on conditions. Take a peek here (DCS Number 400-015-376).

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Lights, camera, action!






Though it might appear that it’s all glamour in town planning those of us in the business understand that there is a lot of technical know-how involved behind the scenes. An appeal case concerning the refusal of a certificate of lawfulness for the use of a property in south London for a mixed use as a dwelling and a photoshoot and film location (DCS Number 400-015-391) illustrates the point. In this case the inspector considered whether the use had achieved immunity from enforcement action.

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Glamorous camping






Since glamping is a relatively recent phenomenon it might be helpful to note an inspector’s ruling that glamping pods need to be treated as static caravans.

In (DCS Number 400-014-852) the appellant argued that the proposed pods were not caravans and therefore did not conflict with development plan policy, which presumed against the development of new static caravan sites in the county given that there was already sufficient provision. The inspector disagreed. Whilst pods are not specifically legally defined he agreed with the council that they fall within the statutory definition of a caravan, that is, any structure designed for human habitation which is capable of being moved from one place to another. The appellant had confirmed that the pods would be kept permanently on the site, that they would be ready assembled when delivered and that they would be connected to an electricity supply. To the inspector’s mind the pods were akin to static caravans, notwithstanding their different appearance and their limited living accommodation. The proposed development would therefore be in conflict with development plan policy, he decided.

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Comeuppance






Comeuppance – a delightful old word which, according to the Oxford English Dictionary, derives from ‘come up’ in the sense of coming up before a judge or court for judgement.

It seems appropriate to say, then, that an appellant seeking prior approval under Part O of the GPDO for the residential conversion of a building in Essex which had been in unlawful use as a hostel (DCS Number 400-014-790) got their comeuppance when an inspector judged that it was the actual use rather than the lawful use on the relevant date which mattered.

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Cultivating equality






We know that planning inspectors are not heartless people so it must be very difficult for them when they feel compelled to deploy an all-too-familiar piece of text. This runs along the lines of “Whilst I have given these personal circumstances careful consideration, I am mindful of the advice contained in Planning Policy Guidance that in general planning is concerned with land use in the public interest. It is also probable that the proposed development would remain long after the current personal circumstances cease to be material.” [Translation: The building will be there long after your frail parent/disabled child is dead so I’m really sorry but I’m going to have to dismiss this one.]

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