Posts Categorized: Quirks of the system

Something and nothing






This one is a little bizarre but….an inspector has determined that a certificate of lawfulness cannot be used to certify that a site has no lawful use (DCS Number 200-007-885).

The inspector identified the main issue in the appeal as being whether s191(1)(a) of the Act can be used to confirm that a site has a nil use or whether its scope is limited to certifying that an actual existing use as opposed to no use at all is lawful.

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Twice over






There is no reason why the curtilage of one dwelling cannot overlap the curtilage of another dwelling, an inspector dealing with an appeal against the refusal of a certificate of lawfulness for a dormer window at a house in Sussex has maintained (DCS Number 400-019-492).

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No worries






An inspector dealing with an appeal against the refusal of a prior approval application for the residential conversion of a redundant agricultural building at a Sussex farm under Schedule 2, Part 3, Class Q, of the GPDO has confirmed that permission is not granted by default if the council fails to determine the application within the requisite 56-day period (DCS Number 400-019-444).

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Enlarging on extensions






Unsurprisingly, confusion can arise about the meaning of the reference in Class A, Part 1, Schedule 2 of the GPDO to “the enlarged part of the dwellinghouse”. Does it mean just the extension currently proposed, or should it include previous extensions to the dwelling? The answer is that it used to be the latter, then it was the former but now it’s the latter, as helpfully set out by an inspector in a recent appeal decision (DCS Number 400-019-328).

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Holiday time






It’s high summer so it must be time to talk about holiday cottages….

Notwithstanding his determination that a holiday cottage at a golf club in Bedfordshire was a dwellinghouse, an inspector decided that the necessary period for its residential occupation to become immune from enforcement was ten years rather than four (DCS Number 200-007-562).

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A ludicrous situation






When a planning inspector finds himself explaining that “We are forced into this somewhat ludicrous situation by the wording of the various Orders and Planning Acts ….” we must be in a serious mess. However, this situation arose in an appeal against an enforcement notice directed at a barn conversion on a farm in Worcestershire (DCS Number 200-007-575). The sequence of events leading to the appeal is this:

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High-handed






A recent appeal case in north Wales addresses an interesting point about the validation of planning applications (DCS Number 400-018-465).

The appellants in this case had made a householder application for ‘alterations and extension to domestic garage to form annexe accommodation’ and they had paid the relevant fee. The planning authority, however, issued a notice of invalidity, with the requirement ‘Please complete and return an application form for planning permission, this type of proposal is not household but the creation of a dwelling, and please note the correct fee is £380.00’.

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