Chilli farmers allowed temporary residence

An inspector has struck down two enforcement notices directed against an unauthorised dwelling at a chilli nursery in Devon and granted it temporary permission for three years.

The building contained propagators and cuttings. The appellants had also fitted a kitchen, bathroom and office to allow residential use, which they claimed was necessary to safeguard the plants from snails and slugs. They asserted that this accorded with permission for a horticultural use.

The inspector found that a mixed horticultural and residential use had been created in 2007, which meant that the ten years required to acquire immunity from enforcement had not yet passed. However, she accepted that growing chillies requires particular expertise. In her opinion, there was a functional need for a staff presence at the site at most times.

Inspector: Sara Morgan; Inquiry

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