“Part 3 Class Q of the GPDO – Appeal Decisions” – 20 additional appeal decisions (total = 300) …

The Part 3 Class Q of the GPDO - Appeal Decisions document has been updated to include 20 additional appeal decisions relating to agricultural-to-residential conversions, for which the conclusions are as follows:

Note: This update contains a relatively large number of appeal decisions, which has significantly increased the size of the Part 3 Class Q of the GPDO - Appeal Decisions document. As such, instead of reading through this update, it's recommended that members open the above document and browse the topics within the "Reference Section", as the latter indicates how many appeals have supported and contradicted each particular conclusion.

December 2015 - Code P3CQ-300 (appeal dismissed):

  • This appeal decision was assessed against the issues specified by paragraph Q.2 as follows:
    - “transport and highways impacts” = no assessment.
    - “noise impacts” = no assessment.
    - “contamination risks” = no assessment.
    - “flooding risks” = no assessment.
    - “location or siting ... impractical or undesirable” = no assessment.
    - “design or external appearance” = no assessment.
  • This appeal decision provides an example of where it was concluded that the site (i.e. the building and any land within its curtilage) was not used solely for an agricultural use, as part of an established agricultural unit, on 20/03/2013 or (if not in use on that date) when it was last in use or (if brought into use after that date) for 10 years. [Note: In other words, the proposed development would not comply with Q.1(a)].
    [Quote: “The appellant has provided two letters that confirms that the barn was used for agricultural purposes up until 2007 and was used for agricultural purposes between 2009 and 2010. However, there is no evidence before me to demonstrate to any reasonable degree that the barn has been used for agricultural purposes as part of an established agricultural unit since 2010. Further, there is no evidence to suggest that the barn has remained unused between 2010 and 20 March 2013. It appears from my site visit that the barn is currently being used and has likely been used, for general domestic storage purposes associated with the appellant’s other property. Irrespective of whether a formal change of use has taken place in planning terms, I cannot conclude from the evidence before me that the barn has been used as part of an established agricultural unit between 2010 and 20 March 2013 or remained unused in this time period, so that its last use prior to 20 March 2013 was for agricultural purposes as part of an established agricultural unit. As a result of this, I must conclude that the proposal does not comply with Class Q.1 (a) and is consequently not permitted development.”].
  • Part 3 Class Q does not apply a test in relation to sustainability of location. (*)
    [Quote: “The Council refused to grant approval as at the time it was of the view that the location of the proposal made it undesirable for the barn to change use. However, since this time the Government’s Planning Practice Guidance has been amended to set out at Paragraph 108 (Reference ID: 13-108-20150305) that the permitted development right does not apply a test in relation to the sustainability of the location. On this basis the Council has set out that their reason for refusal is no longer substantiated. Having regard to all of the evidence before me, I agree with this view.”].

December 2015 - Code P3CQ-299 (appeal dismissed):

  • This appeal decision was assessed against the issues specified by paragraph Q.2 as follows:
    - “transport and highways impacts” = no assessment.
    - “noise impacts” = no assessment.
    - “contamination risks” = no assessment.
    - “flooding risks” = no assessment.
    - “location or siting ... impractical or undesirable” = no assessment.
    - “design or external appearance” = no assessment.
  • This appeal decision provides an example of where it was concluded that works to the property would not fall within the scope of Q(b) and Q.1(i). [Note: In other words, either the works would not constitute “building operations reasonably necessary to convert the building” or the works would not fall within the list of building operations set out by Q.1(i)]. (*)
    [Quote: “More fundamentally, it was clear from my observations that the existing building is not structurally strong enough to take the loading of the new roof. An additional load bearing element would need to be constructed on the southern side to provide support for the roof timbers. Furthermore, there is no evidence to give me the confidence that the stone walls have the structural integrity, without rebuilding and/or reinforcement, to take the weight of the new roof structure. These factors lead me to conclude that the works required to carry out the residential conversion would go beyond those considered to be permitted development under Schedule 2, Part 3, Class Q of the GPDO and the PPG.”].
  • For the purposes of Part 3 Class Q, the access from the highway to the site does not need to be included within the “curtilage”.
  • For the purposes of Part 3 Class Q, any area to be used for vehicle parking (i.e. for the resulting residential unit(s)) does not need to be included within the “curtilage”. (*)
    [Quote: “Moreover, there is no requirement to include access or parking within the curtilage. I see no reason why these elements cannot be identified separately in order to satisfy the Council regarding the transport and highways impacts of the development.”].
  • For the purposes of Part 3 Class Q, it is not necessary for the resulting residential unit(s) to have a “curtilage”. (*)
    [Quote: “The Council has raised the concern that the proposal does not include a curtilage to serve the proposed dwelling. However, there is no obligation in Class Q for the appellant to include any land within the change of use.”].
  • This appeal decision provides an example of where it was concluded that works to the property would not comply with Q.1(g). [Note: In other words, the development would result in the external dimensions of the building extending beyond the external dimensions of the existing building at any given point].
    [Note: The existing building has no roof, and the Inspector states that the submitted information does not include “scale drawings of the proposed dwelling [or] evidence regarding the dimensions and appearance of the former roof structure”].
    [Quote: “Without scale drawings of the proposed dwelling and evidence regarding the dimensions and appearance of the former roof structure it is impossible to establish whether the scheme would comply with the restriction set out in Paragraph Q.1(g). This states that development is not permitted by Class Q if it would result in the external dimensions of the building extending beyond the external dimensions of the existing building at any given point.”].
  • When assessing an application for prior approval, the development plan (e.g. the LPA’s Local Plan, etc) is not a material consideration. (*)
    [Quote: “The appellant has drawn my attention to Policy DP22 of the adopted Mendip District Local Plan Part 1: Strategy and Policies 2006-2029. Whilst this development plan policy would be the starting point in assessing a planning application to convert the building, it is not relevant to whether the proposal would meet the provisions of Class Q in terms of being permitted development. As such, it has no bearing on this appeal.”].

December 2015 - Code P3CQ-298 (appeal dismissed):

  • This appeal decision was assessed against the issues specified by paragraph Q.2 as follows:
    - “transport and highways impacts” = no assessment.
    - “noise impacts” = no assessment.
    - “contamination risks” = no assessment.
    - “flooding risks” = no assessment.
    - “location or siting ... impractical or undesirable” = no assessment.
    - “design or external appearance” = no assessment.
  • This appeal decision provides an example of where it was concluded that works to the property would not fall within the scope of Q(b) and Q.1(i). [Note: In other words, either the works would not constitute “building operations reasonably necessary to convert the building” or the works would not fall within the list of building operations set out by Q.1(i)]. (*)
    [Note: Inspector rejected an application for costs against the Council in relation to this issue].
    [Quote: “The appellant had submitted a structural survey for a previous planning application to convert the barn to two units of holiday accommodation, which indicated that the existing steel superstructure was sufficiently robust to withstand the conversion works proposed. Based on this evidence I accept that the existing steel stanchions would also be likely to be suitable for the conversion that is now proposed. As such the proposal would represent partial rather than complete demolition of the existing building, which is allowed for under Q.1(i)(ii) of the GPDO. 13. In addition, it is argued by the appellant that the proposed new floor would be supported by the newly constructed Nudura frame walling system, and this would not require, in itself, a new structural element. However, I consider that the construction of new walls, that in turn would support a new floor to the building, would entail a new structural element to the building.”].
  • This appeal decision states, or implies, that it is not possible for works consisting of the erection of a new building to fall within the scope of Q(b) and Q.1(i). [Note: This conclusion typically relates to the situation where the existing building is relatively insubstantial (e.g. it was designed as such, or it has deteriorated, etc)].
    [Note: Inspector rejected an application for costs against the Council in relation to this issue].
    [Quote: “In effect the proposal would entail the removal of all the existing building except for the steel framework, and the construction of what would essentially be a new building, including new walls, a new roof and a new first floor. Therefore I consider that overall the extent of the works as are proposed would entail new structural elements and would demonstrably go beyond what could be considered as reasonably necessary in terms of the GPDO and the advice contained in the PPG. Consequently I consider that it would not be permitted development under Class Q(b) of the GPDO.”].
  • This appeal decision states, or implies, that the successful completion of the prior approval process is not legally equivalent to confirmation that the proposed development would be lawful (i.e. confirmation that it would comply with all of the other limitations and conditions of Part 3 Class Q). (*)
    [Note: Inspector dismissed appeal after Council failed to issue decision within 56 days].
    [Note: Inspector awarded costs against the Council in relation to this issue].
    [Quote: “Since the Council, in its role as LPA, failed to notify the appellant within 56 days following the date on which the application for prior approval was made, this has the effect that the Council can no longer require a determination as to whether the prior approval of the LPA is required for the matters referred to in Q.2(1) (a) to (f) of the GPDO. Therefore I consider that deemed consent in terms of Q.2(1)(a) to (f) of the GPDO had been granted, and the Council had therefore lost the ability to refuse prior approval based on the criteria contained in Q.2(1)(e) of the GPDO. Consequently this cannot form a reason for refusal of this proposal. However, I conclude that it is still necessary to consider the proposal in regard to the conditions and limitations listed under Class Q.1 of the GPDO, and in reaching my decision I have considered these matters accordingly.”].
  • For the purposes of the post-15/04/2015 version of Q.1(h), the phrase “would result in a building or buildings having more than 450 square metres of floor space having a use falling within Class C3” refers to the resulting floor space (i.e. rather than the original floor space or the existing floor space).
    [Conclusion: It’s not possible to convert less than 450m2 of agricultural floor space to more than 450m2 of residential floor space by inserting new floors, etc].
  • For the purposes of the 06/04/2014-14/04/2015 version of Q.1(h) (i.e. MB.1(h)), the phrase “would result in more than 450 square metres of floor space of building or buildings within an established agricultural unit having changed use under Class MB” refers to the existing floor space (i.e. rather than the original floor space or the resulting floor space).
    [Quote: “Therefore to summarise, Class MB was concerned with the floor space of the building that was to change use, whereas Class Q is concerned with the floor space that would result from the proposed development.”].
  • This appeal decision provides an example of where the Inspector concluded that the LPA did not notify the applicant of the decision (i.e. as to whether prior approval was given or refused) within the 56 day deadline. (*)
    [Note: The application was received by the LPA on Fri 21/11/2014.  The Inspector counted this date as day 0, and therefore day 56 was Fri 16/01/2015].
    [Quote: “However, the Council has acknowledged that, despite the date indicated on the decision notice, it did not notify the appellant of its decision by no later than 16 January 2015. As such the prescribed period of 56 days, as detailed in Part W(11)(c) of the GPDO, for the determination by the local planning authority (LPA) as to whether prior approval is required that is referred to in Part Q.2(1) of the GPDO had expired.”].

November 2015 - Code P3CQ-297 (appeal allowed):

  • This appeal decision was assessed against the issues specified by paragraph Q.2 as follows:
    - “transport and highways impacts” = acceptable (minimal assessment).
    - “noise impacts” = no assessment.
    - “contamination risks” = acceptable (short assessment).
    - “flooding risks” = no assessment.
    - “location or siting ... impractical or undesirable” = acceptable (short assessment).
    - “design or external appearance” = no assessment.
  • This appeal decision provides an example of where the Inspector, when granting prior approval, decided that a particular condition (or s106 agreement) should be imposed.
    [Note: Condition relating to contamination].
  • This appeal decision provides an example of where the Inspector, when considering the “contamination risks on the site”, assessed the safety of occupiers of the resulting residential unit(s) and concluded that this would be acceptable.
    [Quote: “In the Council’s view insufficient information was submitted with the prior notification to demonstrate that the site poses no contamination risks which could potentially affect residents of the new dwelling. However, a consultant’s report was submitted with the appeal. Although founded on desk-top searches of databases rather than on-site investigation, this indicates that there are no environmental hazards in the immediate vicinity and that there appears to be nothing on the farm itself likely to cause significant pollution other than ‘standard agricultural practices’. The report’s overall conclusion is that the property poses an acceptably low contamination risk and that no further investigation is needed. However, the Council does not consider the desk-top nature of the report sufficient to answer their concern and grant prior approval. I saw that the farmyard is partly overgrown and it appeared that the buildings have been unused for some time. There is no clear visible indication that they have been the base for intensive ‘modern’ farming practices or any other agricultural activities with potential to result in the presence of contaminants to any significant extent; however, in my view residual doubt about this matter is capable of being met by a condition imposed under paragraph W(13).”].
  • Part 3 Class Q does not apply a test in relation to sustainability of location. (*)
    [Quote: “Although the Council refers to paragraph 55 of the National Planning Policy Framework, GPDO paragraph W(10) states that regard should be paid to this ‘so far as relevant to the matter for which prior approval is sought’. National Planning Practice Guidance advises that the current permitted development right deliberately does not apply a test in relation to the sustainability of location since many agricultural buildings are not in villages and may not be able to rely on public transport for their daily needs.”].

November 2015 - Code P3CQ-296 (appeal dismissed):

  • [Note: To view these conclusions, please log onto the website as a member].

November 2015 - Code P3CQ-295 (appeal dismissed):

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November 2015 - Code P3CQ-294 (appeal dismissed):

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November 2015 - Code P3CQ-293 (appeal dismissed):

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November 2015 - Code P3CQ-292 (appeal dismissed):

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November 2015 - Code P3CQ-291 (appeal dismissed):

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November 2015 - Code P3CQ-290 (appeal dismissed):

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November 2015 - Code P3CQ-289 (appeal dismissed):

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November 2015 - Code P3CQ-288 (appeal allowed):

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November 2015 - Code P3CQ-287 (appeal dismissed):

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November 2015 - Code P3CQ-286 (appeal allowed):

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November 2015 - Code P3CQ-285 (appeal dismissed):

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November 2015 - Code P3CQ-284 (appeal allowed):

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November 2015 - Code P3CQ-283 (appeal allowed):

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November 2015 - Code P3CQ-282 (appeal dismissed):

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November 2015 - Code P3CQ-281 (appeal dismissed):

  • [Note: To view these conclusions, please log onto the website as a member].

Notes:

  • To view the conclusions and decision notices for any of the above appeals, please view the Part 3 Class Q of the GPDO - Appeal Decisions document. As a member of the Planning Jungle website, you can view the decision notices for all of the appeals within the above document for no extra cost.
  • Any of the above conclusions marked with a "(*)" contradict other appeal decisions. The "Reference Section" within the above document indicates how many appeals have supported and contradicted each particular conclusion.
  • The above document also includes 15 "Potential fallback position" appeals, which are NOT summarised (only listed).