Caravan must be removed from barn construction site

An enforcement notice requiring the removal of a chalet from agricultural land in Derbyshire was upheld after an inspector decided that it was not permitted development.

Prior approval had been obtained for the erection of a five-bay agricultural building. Two bays had been constructed by the time of the inspector’s visit. The appellant claimed that the chalet was a caravan and was permitted development by virtue of Part 4, Class A or Part 5, Class A of Schedule 2 to the GPDO. Part 4, Class A stated, the inspector noted, that the provision on land of buildings, moveable structures, works, plant or machinery required temporarily in connection with and for the duration of operations carried out on land or adjoining land was permitted development.

However, he agreed with the council that this did not help the appellant because the notice alleged a material change of the use of the land to a residential use and the lawful use of the land was agricultural. Part 5 of the GPDO dealt with caravan sites at Part A, he noted. This permitted the use of land as a caravan site, including land on which building was being carried out, if that use was for the accommodation of a person employed in connection with the operations.

The inspector ruled, however, that it was stretching credulity as to any on-going need for someone to live on the site. The prior approval notice was issued some 18 months before his visit and he considered that the structure under construction could be erected in a matter of weeks. ‘Being carried out’ did not suggest a situation where works which could take a few weeks might be spread out over years. The residential unit did not constitute permitted development, the inspector ruled.

Inspector John Whalley; Written representations

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