Rural planning and development

With the constantly evolving planning system, it is more important than ever to obtain specialist advice on how the current legislation, national and local planning policies and material considerations impact on your development proposals. The Localism Bill, set to abolish regional spatial strategies containing regional house building targets and introduce neighbourhood plans and the Community Right to Build to assist community development plans, will, no doubt, have a marked effect.

Markets sources are quick to praise this team as “well-informed and highly motivated.” One impressed source adds that “they are a young, vibrant and energetic team that just gets on with the job.” Chambers UK 2013

At Thrings, we advise and represent clients on all aspects of contentious and non-contentious rural planning issues in England and Wales ranging from application advice and planning agreements to appeals in respect of enforcement notices and the refusal/non determination of planning applications. The team has particular expertise in representing clients on statutory challenges and judicial review claims in the High Court. The team advises on planning considerations relating to farm diversification schemes such as, amongst others, the temporary use of land for recreational purposes and the conversion of redundant farm buildings. We also deal with a range of Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) development including intensive agriculture & livestock operations, Energy from Waste (EfW) schemes and renewables involving technologies such as, photovoltaics and wind.

The team has strong ties with organisations such as the National Farmers’ Union (we are the sole NFU panel firm for eight counties), the Country Land & Business Association, The Tenant Farmers Association, the Institute of Agricultural Secretaries and Administrators Association, and the Central Association of Agricultural Valuers.

We advise on :

  • securing planning permission for agricultural dwellings and buildings and diversification schemes
  • certificates of lawfulness applications
  • removal of agricultural occupancy conditions
  • appeals against enforcement notices
  • appeals against the refusal/non-determination of planning applications
  • statutory appeals and judicial review
  • planning and infrastructure agreements
  • permitted development rights
  • compulsory purchase
  • town and village greens

Recent matters the team has advised on include:

Successfully defending injunction proceedings in Benford v Hart District Council, which was widely reported.

Securing Certificates of Lawfulness in relation to a motocross track in the South Downs National Park, a storage facility (B8) in the Green Belt and various residential annexes and independent dwellings.

Successfully appealing against, amongst others, two Enforcement Notices relating to alleged breaches of planning control in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, an Enforcement Notice relating to operational development in connection with a diversification project and an Enforcement Notice relating to the change of use of land to the stationing of caravans and obtaining associated costs awards.

Securing the removal of agricultural occupancy conditions (though applications for certificates of lawful use and Deeds of Release), one of which resulted in the increase in the value of a substantial rural property by £100,000.

Seeking planning permission for agricultural dwellings, permanent agricultural buildings and diversification schemes.

Bringing a successful judicial review claim against the Ministry of Defence, concerning the misapplication of the Crichel Down Rules.

Successfully challenging Inspector’s decisions regarding planning and enforcement notice appeals and bringing judicial review claims on behalf of resident groups.

Drafting and negotiating planning obligations and infrastructure agreements with the relevant local authority relating to agricultural and estate dwellings and holiday lets.

Rosalyn Trotman
0117 930 9577
Alex Madden
(+44) 117 930 9575
(+44) 7766 517670

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