CASEBOOK: Appeal cases - Commercial and Industrial - Immunity claim lost on extra exhibition days

An appeal seeking confirmation that land in Nottinghamshire can be used for exhibition purposes in excess of the number of days permitted by a lawful development certificate (LDC) and the provisions of the General Permitted Development Order (GPDO) 1995 has been rejected on the basis that the use was not continuous over the relevant ten-year period.

Responding to an enforcement notice issued by the council, the appellant company claimed that the LDC permitted use of the site for 54 days together with the 28 days permitted under class B, part 4, schedule 2 of the GPDO, thus providing a total of 82 days of exhibition use. It also asserted that the use had exceeded this limit by varying amounts over the previous ten-year period and that this justified permitting the exhibition use for 82 days in any calendar year in addition to the rights conferred by the GPDO.

The inspector considered that where the exhibition use exceeded the 54 days allowed by the LDC, it was reasonable to allocate any surplus days towards the allowance permitted by the GPDO. Applying this approach to the evidence, he found that the terms of the LDC had not been exceeded during two of the ten years.

On that basis, he concluded that a lawful exhibition use of the site for more than 82 days a year had not been established. In considering the planning merits of extending the number of days during which the site could be used, he accepted that an additional 19 days for exhibition purposes over and above that permitted by the LDC would be reasonable.

DCS No: 53838743; Inspector: Paul Morris; Inquiry.

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