Occupancy restrictions lifted on tied cottages

A condition imposed on a planning permission for a farmhouse in Gloucestershire, restricting the occupation of two cottages owned by the appellants, has been judged unnecessary.

The council had approved the farmhouse as being essential to serve a new egg production facility. However, it maintained that the existing cottages' occupation should remain tied to the farm business, so that they would remain part of the district's stock of farm dwellings when their current tenants left.

The tenants had worked for the farm business but not for the egg production unit, which operated as a separate business. The inspector noted that in allowing the new farmhouse, the council had accepted that the need for staff accommodation to serve the egg unit could not be met by the cottages.

As it was not clear that the cottages were needed to secure effective running of the wider farm enterprise, she decided that the condition was not reasonable or necessary. However, she refused to award costs to the appellants. In her opinion, it was appropriate for the council to consider the future use of the cottages, as they fell within the appellants' control.

Inspector: Jane Miles; Hearing

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