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Brian Whiteley: New Planning Aid England advice on camping, glamping and caravanning

Together with some experienced volunteers, Brian Whiteley - a planning advisor at Planning Aid England - has helped prepare some online guidance for the public following the recent growth in camping, glamping and caravanning.

During the pandemic there’s been increased demand for staycations. Landowners have seen the potential to help meet that demand over the last two years by using their land for camping, glamping and caravanning.  We’ve certainly noticed a rise in the number of enquiries about these uses to our Advice Service over the last two years.

Whilst the pandemic might be waning, it now looks as if increases in inflation back to much higher levels than in recent years will continue to make staycations attractive to many. As a result, we expect to see continued demand for more camping, glamping and caravanning sites.

New advice

Consequently, we have produced some written advice for the public which aims to provide straightforward guidance to the question: ‘Do I need permission for a camping, glamping, or caravan site?’

This guidance has three parts:

  1. Outlining the range of relevant permitted development rights for temporary sites;
  2. Giving some advice regarding the main considerations for a local authority dealing with a planning application for a permanent site; and
  3. A synopsis of separate licensing requirements under the Caravan Act, 1960.

We’ve tried to keep it as short as possible, signposting where people might want to look for further information if they need to, e.g. to our website for advice on making planning applications.

Permitted development rights

We have stressed that many sites can still be used for 28 days within permitted development rights for camping or glamping. This is important in that it should be possible to continue to help meet rising demand for these uses without always going through a complex planning approval process.

Nevertheless, the advice notes there are catches to look out for with the 28-day limit (for example with trying to use certain sites such as private gardens or if a proposed site is in, or close to, a SSSI/SAC/SPA or Ramsar).

It also reminds site owners and operators to ensure that their sites comply with all relevant requirements, not just planning policies and regulations - for example other legislation covering the provision of sanitation or other site facilities, flood prevention, drainage, etc.

The full guidance is available at here

People can also find advice on making house alterations, installing renewable energy technologies at home, and undertaking change of use and alterations to business premises in our hub here.

Planning Aid England (PAE) provides planning advice and support to help individuals and communities engage with the planning system and get involved in planning their local area. The work is delivered by over 200 dedicated volunteers who are members of the RTPI and have a range of skills, interests and expertise. Find out more about what they offer here.

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