IMPORTANT: The government publishes a consultation (until 03/06/2021) relating to PD rights …

[UPDATE: For the subsequent legislation relating to this consultation, please view this post, and this post.]

The government has published the following consultation, which runs for 3 weeks from 13/05/2021 until 03/06/2021:

  • May 2021: Technical consultation on consequential changes to permitted development rights (pdf print version of HTML webpage) (link).

Notes:

  • The webpage (link) for the above consultation includes the following information:
    - "The government reformed the Use Classes Order [1987] from 1 September 2020 to establish new uses classes. These changes include the creation of a new broad Commercial, Business and Service (E) use class which includes shops, banks, restaurants and offices etc and provides for greater flexibility for high streets and town centres. Existing permitted development rights that make reference to the former use classes continue to apply until 31 July 2021.".
    - "This technical consultation sets out detail of the proposed consequential changes to existing permitted development rights that make reference to the former use classes and invites comments. It fulfils the commitment in the government response to the Supporting housing delivery and public infrastructure consultation [(link)] on permitted development rights from December 2020.".
  • "The proposed consequential changes" section within the above consultation document sets out the following two types of proposed changes:
    - "a) Minor technical changes".
    - "b) More significant changes".
  • Paragraph 13 describes the "Minor technical changes" as follows:
    - "These [minor technical changes] are where a reference to a former use class is now updated to refer to the new. For example, where a reference to a shop previously referred to use class A1 shop, we propose it should now be updated to refer to the Commercial Business Service use class E(a). There are proposed minor and technical changes to 10 rights and two paragraphs as set out below:".
  • Note: For a list of the proposed "Minor technical changes", please view the table after paragraph 13.
  • Paragraph 14 describes the "More significant changes" as follows:
    - "An additional 22 individual rights require broader changes, as set out in the table below. Many of the rights are linked, and therefore some questions below are related to one another. For example there are a number of rights that relate to change of use to uses now within the Commercial, Business and Service use class [E], or to former D2 assembly and leisure uses. Where possible we have grouped related matters thematically.".
  • Note: For a list of the proposed "More significant changes", please view the table after paragraph 32.

Comments by the Planning Jungle website:

Some of the proposed changes within the above consultation document represent a significant widening of PD rights. For example:

  • 1) At present, Part 3 Classes A, B, and JA allow a change of use from A5 to any of A1, A2, A3, or B1(a). In the case of a change of use to B1(a), the existing Class a) does not apply to article 2(3) land nor a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) nor the standard 4 exclusions (i.e. listed building, scheduled monument, safety hazard area, or military explosives storage area), b) does not allow more than 500m2 of floor space to change use, and c) requires the developer to submit an application for prior approval with respect to various issues (including transport and highways impacts, impacts of noise on the intended occupiers, and (if the building is located in a key shopping area) "the sustainability of that shopping area", etc).
    >>> In contrast, it's proposed that a new "single consolidated right" would allow a change of use from a "hot food takeaway" to E [note: Use Class E (mostly) corresponds to the pre-01/09/2020 Use Classes A1, A2, A3, B1, D1(a), D1(b), and D2(e)]. Furthermore, it's proposed that the replacement Class "will not be subject to any limitations, such as size limits or exclusions, or conditions, such as matters for prior approval".
  • 2) At present, Part 3 Classes C and K allow a change of use from a "casino" to either A3 or D2. In the case of a change of use to A3, the existing Class a) does not apply to a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) nor the standard 4 exclusions (i.e. listed building, scheduled monument, safety hazard area, or military explosives storage area), b) does not allow more than 150m2 of floor space to change use, and c) requires the developer to submit an application for prior approval with respect to various issues (including transport and highways impacts, noise impacts, odour impacts, and impacts of the hours of opening, etc).
    >>> In contrast, it's proposed that a new "single consolidated right" would allow a change of use from a "casino" to E [note: Use Class E (mostly) corresponds to the pre-01/09/2020 Use Classes A1, A2, A3, B1, D1(a), D1(b), and D2(e)]. Furthermore, it's proposed that the replacement Class "will not be subject to any limitations, such as size limits or exclusions, or conditions, such as matters for prior approval".
  • 3) Note: For a change of use from either a "betting office" or a "pay day loan shop", there would be a similar situation to the above examples "1)" and "2)".
  • 4) At present, Part 3 Class G allows a change of use from either A1 or A2 to either A1+"up to 2 flats" or A2+"up to 2 flats".
    >>> In contrast, it's proposed that the replacement Class would allow a change of use from E to E+"up to 2 flats" [note: Use Class E (mostly) corresponds to the pre-01/09/2020 Use Classes A1, A2, A3, B1, D1(a), D1(b), and D2(e)].
  • 5) At present, Part 3 Class H allows a change of use from either A1+"up to 2 flats" or A2+"up to 2 flats" to either A1 or A2.
    >>> In contrast, it's proposed that the replacement Class would allow a change of use from E+"up to 2 flats" to E [note: Use Class E (mostly) corresponds to the pre-01/09/2020 Use Classes A1, A2, A3, B1, D1(a), D1(b), and D2(e)].
  • 6) At present, Part 3 Classes R and S allow a change of use from an agricultural building to any of a "flexible use" (i.e. A1, A2, A3, B1, B8, C1, or D2), a "state-funded school", or a "registered nursery".
    >>> In contrast, it's proposed "to broaden the right to allow agricultural buildings to change to any Commercial Business and Service use [E]" [note: Use Class E (mostly) corresponds to the pre-01/09/2020 Use Classes A1, A2, A3, B1, D1(a), D1(b), and D2(e)], albeit that "provision is not made in respect of former assembly and leisure uses [D2]".
  • 7) At present, Part 3 Class T allows a change of use from any of B1, C1, C2, C2A, or D2 to either a "state-funded school" or a "registered nursery".
    >>> In contrast, it's proposed that "The C1, C2 and C2 A use classes remain unchanged" and that "the right be amended to allow any the change of use of any uses within [E] to a state funded school" [note: Use Class E (mostly) corresponds to the pre-01/09/2020 Use Classes A1, A2, A3, B1, D1(a), D1(b), and D2(e)], albeit that "the change of use will not be permitted from former assembly and leisure uses (D2) now in the Local Community ( F2 ) use class or uses such as live music venues and cinemas etc now listed in article 3 (6)".
  • 8) At present, Part 4 Class CA allows the provision of a temporary "state-funded school" on "vacant commercial land" (i.e. B1, C1, C2, C2A, or D2, where all buildings have been demolished) for up to 3 academic years.
    >>> In contrast, it's proposed "to significantly broaden the right to apply to land previously used as Commercial Business and Service use [E]" [note: Use Class E (mostly) corresponds to the pre-01/09/2020 Use Classes A1, A2, A3, B1, D1(a), D1(b), and D2(e)], albeit that it's proposed "to preserve the protections afforded by the new Local Community (F2) use class and preserve the protections for article 3 (6) uses such as live music venues (s) and cinemas (t) in respect of uses formerly in the assembly and leisure use class [D2]".
  • 9) At present, Part 4 Class D allows a change of use from any of A1, A2, A3, A5, B1, D1, D2, a "betting office", or a "pay day loan shop" to a temporary "flexible use" (i.e. A1, A2, A3, B1, D1(a), D1(d), D1(e), D1(f), or D1(g)) for a single continuous period of up to 3 years.
    >>> In contrast, it's proposed that the replacement Class would allow a change of use from any of E, a "hot food takeaway", a "betting office", or a "pay day loan shop" to any of E, F1(b), F1(c), F1(d), or F1(e) for a single continuous period of up to 3 years [note: Use Class E (mostly) corresponds to the pre-01/09/2020 Use Classes A1, A2, A3, B1, D1(a), D1(b), and D2(e)], albeit that it's proposed to "preserve the protections against the change of use now afforded to former assembly and leisure uses [D2] such as cinemas and live music venues now listed in article 3 (6), and to the F2 Local Community use class".
  • 10) At present, Part 7 Classes A and F allow the extension or alteration of a "shop" [A1], a "financial or professional services establishment" [A2], or an "office building" [B1(a)].
    >>> In contrast, it's proposed that the replacement Class would be "expanded to apply to the whole of the Commercial, Business and Service [E]" [note: Use Class E (mostly) corresponds to the pre-01/09/2020 Use Classes A1, A2, A3, B1, D1(a), D1(b), and D2(e)]. The replacement Class would "allow for ground floor extensions only: no higher than 4 metres, or within 2 metres of boundary" [note: in the case of an "office building", this would be more restrictive in terms of height but less restrictive in terms of distance to the boundary].
  • 11) At present, Part 7 Classes E and G allow the provision of a hard surface within the curtilage of a "shop or catering, financial or professional services establishment" [A1, A2, A3, A4, or A5], or an "office building" [B1(a)].
    >>> In contrast, it's proposed that the replacement Class would be "expanded to apply to the whole of the Commercial, Business and Service [E]" [note: Use Class E (mostly) corresponds to the pre-01/09/2020 Use Classes A1, A2, A3, B1, D1(a), D1(b), and D2(e)].

Some of the proposed changes within the above consultation document represent a significant narrowing of PD rights. For example:

  • 1) At present, Part 3 Class I allows a change of use from either B2 or B8 to B1.
    >>> In contrast, it's proposed that "this right is withdrawn".
  • 2) At present, Part 3 Class J allows a change of use from any of A1, A2, a "betting office", or a "pay day loan shop" to D2.
    >>> In contrast, it's proposed that "this permitted development right is withdrawn".
  • 3) At present, Part 3 Class JA allows a change of use from a "launderette" to B1(a).
    >>> In contrast, it's proposed that "In order to protect such services [launderettes], and remove the need for prior approval, it is proposed that such uses are not part of the single consolidated right.".
  • 4) At present, Part 3 Class K allows a change of use from a "casino" to D2.
    >>> In contrast, it's proposed "to withdraw this right" (albeit that the above new "single consolidated right" would allow a change of use from a "casino" to E, which partly includes the pre-01/09/2020 Use Class D2(e)).
  • 5) At present, Part 3 Class T allows a change of use from any of B1, C1, C2, C2A, or D2 to either a "state-funded school" or a "registered nursery".
    >>> In contrast, it's proposed "that the right allow the change of use to schools and not nurseries" (albeit that "Registered nurseries now fall within the Commercial, Business and Service use class (E (f)) and therefore premises can move freely to such a use from an office etc").
  • 6) At present, Part 4 Class C allows the use of a site (i.e. a building and any land within its curtilage) as a temporary "state-funded school" for 2 academic years.
    >>> In contrast, it's proposed "to preserve the protections afforded by the new Local Community (F2) use class by no longer applying the right to such uses", and to "preserve the protections for article 3 (6) uses such as live music venues (s), cinema (t), concert hall (u), bingo hall (v) and dance hall (x), as well as public houses (p), and drinking establishment with expanded food provision (q)".

Other Notes:

  • Paragraph 7 within the above consultation document states the following:
    - "This is a technical update to align existing permitted development rights with the current use classes, rather than a wholesale review of permitted development rights. It is not the intention to undertake a consolidation of the [GPDO 2015] following these changes.".
  • The "GPDO 2015 (Consolidated)" document on the Planning Jungle website currently incorporates a total of 23 SIs (i.e. the original SI + 22 amendment SIs), and will be updated to incorporate any further amendment SIs (including any amendment SI that results from the above consultation document).

Other sources of information:

  • December 2020: Supporting housing delivery and public service infrastructure (pdf print version of HTML webpage) (link).
    - Note: For more information about the above document, please view this post.
  • March 2021: Supporting housing delivery and public service infrastructure - government response (pdf print version of HTML webpage) (link).
    - Note: For more information about the above document, please view this post.