Samuel & Son have successfully assisted a client with a retrospective planning application for the retention of an existing accommodation and the change from private to commercial equestrian use of his stable yard following on from the LPA serving a ‘Planning Contravention Notice’ for unauthorised development on the client’s property.
Retrospective Dwelling for Equestrian Rural Worker & Commercial Equestrian Business
Samuel & Son were approached by a client who had been served a ‘Planning Contravention Notice’ in relation to the unauthorised commercial and residential use of his stable yard.
The original consent for the stable yard was for private equestrian use only whereas our client had let out the property to an equestrian coach who was running a livery and training yard. The most significant breach of planning was the conversion of part of the main stable block to residential accommodation that served as a home for the equestrian coach who was living on site for the purpose of managing her business.
Dan Page and his client firstly met with a planning officer from the Local Planning Authority (LPA) at a pre-application advice surgery to discuss the case and agree the best way of addressing the various planning breaches. Subsequently Dan submitted a single retrospective application to the LPA on behalf of our client for the retention of the existing accommodation for a rural worker and the change of use of the land to commercial equestrian.
The policy concerning dwellings for rural workers has undergone a dramatic shift since the introduction of the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) and with this policy largely untested, the outcome was far from guaranteed. Dan needed to demonstrate an essential need for the equestrian coach to live on site in the interest of the ongoing success of the business and prove that the business in turn supported the local rural economy. Arguments included animal welfare, security and the employment of local workers.
Helpfully, the commercial equestrian business had been established for a number of years and had operated from our client’s property for about 3 years. Whilst policy in this case did not require a means test for the business, the business history and financial information provided added considerable weight to the application demonstrating that it was supporting a viable rural business with significance to the local rural community.
In this case, the LPA granted consent for the change of use to commercial equestrian and for the retention of the rural worker’s dwelling. Needless to say our client and his commercial tenant were delighted with the result. Our client now has a guaranteed long term income from the commercial lease assisting with the management and development of the holding and the equestrian coach can continue to live and run her business on the site without the worry of enforcement.
“I would like to take this opportunity to thank Dan and his colleagues at Samuel and Son for their help in gaining residential planning consent at the stables. I felt that they were extremely thorough with the case they provided to the LPA, and that they were very professional, and efficient in all aspects of the application. As you can imagine I am extremely pleased with the positive outcome”