Planning Portal

Draft PPS14 Sustainable Development in the Countryside
Policy CTY 9

Policy CTY 9 – Farm Diversification
Planning permission will be granted for a farm diversification proposal where it has been demonstrated that this is complementary to the agricultural operations on the farm and will be operated as part of the farm enterprise. The following criteria will apply:
  • in terms of character and scale it is appropriate to its location;
  • it will not have an adverse impact on the natural or built heritage; and
  • it will not result in detrimental impact on the amenity of nearby residential dwellings including potential problems arising from noise, smell and pollution.
Proposals will normally only be acceptable where they involve the re-use or adaptation of existing farm buildings. Exceptionally where a new building is justified this should be small-scale and satisfactorily integrated with an existing group of buildings. The design and materials to be used should be sympathetic to the locality and adjacent buildings.

Justification & Amplification

4.66 The agricultural industry continues to undergo substantial changes that have led many farmers to look for alternative sources of income to supplement that derived from farming. Some farmers have responded by diversification into nonagricultural activities located on the farm holding. The Government is committed to supporting this process of diversification where it is compatible with other objectives for the countryside.
4.67 This policy aims to promote forms of diversification that are sustainable in the countryside. It is important that the countryside is not spoilt by the unfettered development of urban uses. Diversification proposals, therefore, should be of a scale and nature appropriate for the location and be capable of satisfactory integration into the rural landscape. Applications for large-scale proposals more suitable to the urban area or existing urban-based enterprises seeking relocation will not be acceptable.
4.68 Diversification should be facilitated through the re-use or adaptation of existing buildings. A new building will only be permitted where existing farm buildings are not available to accommodate the proposed use, either because they are essential for the maintenance of the existing farm enterprise or are clearly unsuitable for adaptation and re-use. The applicant will be required to satisfactorily demonstrate why existing buildings cannot be used.
4.69 Additional policy guidance on specific forms of farm diversification is set out in a number of other planning policy statements.
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