In assessing whether the material change in use of the site would be inappropriate development in the green belt, in accordance with NPPF policy, the inspector was clear that impact on openness had to be taken into account. She considered that, irrespective of whether it would be designed to look like a log cabin, the caravan would appear as a solid man-made feature, and as a result of its scale and mass the openness of the green belt would be reduced. Moreover, the caravan and surrounding domestic paraphernalia would erode rural character and encroach on the countryside, contrary to one of the purposes of including land within the green belt.
The inspector concluded that, despite the positive support given in the NPPF for the development of land-based rural businesses, there was no essential operational need for a full-time presence on the modestly sized and recently established sheep farm and therefore no very special circumstances existed to clearly outweigh the harm to the green belt and she dismissed the appeal.
Inspector: Alison Partington; Hearing