Diversification case wins green belt barn approval

An inspector has quashed an enforcement notice requiring the removal of an unauthorised barn at a farm in the Gloucestershire green belt after accepting that the building will assist with branching out the business.

The appellant had diversified a pony breeding business into one that also bought and sold hay and straw and kept sheep. He claimed that the barn was permitted under class A, part 6, schedule 2 of the General Permitted Development Order 1995. The inspector decided it was not because the holding was to less than five hectares.

Breeding rare ponies did not amount to an agricultural use and the case for a barn to support the sheep flock lacked detail, he found. Nonetheless, he concluded that the appellants' diversification efforts were supported by national planning policy and amounted to the very special circumstances required to secure permission.

Inspector: Roger Dyer; Written representations.

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