Donkey Riding Held to be a Material Change of Use
In a recent planning appeal decision, the Planning Inspector held that the use of an agricultural property for commercial donkey rides would be a material change of use and would not be ancillary to the use of the property for agriculture and the keeping of donkeys.
In this case, the applicant applied for a Certificate of Lawfulness for a Proposed Use or Development for the use of the property for commercial donkey rides for 6 months of the year, on the basis that this use would be ancillary to the main use of the property for agricultural purposes, and the application was rejected by the Council. The applicant subsequently appealed.
The inspector held that whether the use of the property for donkey rides would amount to an ancillary use was a matter of fact and agree and on the facts of the case held that the use of the property (for donkey rides) would not be reasonably regarded as incidental to the keeping of donkeys on a premises. Accordingly, it was held that a material change of use would occur which amounted to development and so planning permission would be required. One of the issues in this case was that the farm was not readily accessible by public transport and users would need to visit the site by private motor vehicle and so the increase of traffic to the farm was likely to be considerable.
This is a useful reminder for anyone in the agriculture sector wishing to diversify their land that planning permission may be required for any additional uses of their properties if the use is not within the planning definition of agriculture, classed as an ancillary use or permitted by a permitted development right and advice should be taken before commencing any additional uses as to whether an express planning permission may be required.
Case Reference: PINS: APP/W1145/X/20/3250364
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