Refused change of use and planning

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    Refused change of use and planning

    About planning refusal for change of use.
    hi pilmen can you help me
    Back in 2014 I purchased some land adjacent to my property. This land has always been maintained by council although they didn’t own it. 2 years ago they informed me I was now responsible for maintenance of land. Last year I payed a lot of money to have 2 trees removed from land as they were damaged in a storm and considered dangerous. Council informed me this was my responsibility even though council planted the trees and also maintained them but now said it was my responsibility. I’ve recently applied to make the land private garden. The land is open space but not classed as anything according to planning. They have refused to let me enclose the land but won’t maintain it. I have documents dating back to 1960 that state the council will maintain the land( I have these because we purchased the house of wife grandad after he passed). It seem council want the land to remain open space but want me to foot the bill to maintain it. If you can drop me a email I can send you a plan of the site. Link to planning application

    I would enclose it by way of fencing it. Just because the council say they don't want you to enclose it doesn't mean they are right. Also with councils everything has to go through committees and in your case they will not want the responsibility of saying "yes you can enclose it"
    In hindsight its a shame that you had the 2 dangerous trees removed from the land as that would have been a good reason to fence round the land.
    And if you enclose it, they will have to ask a committee what to do, they will know that you own the land they will have to vote on whether to serve an enforcement notice, and under what grounds?
    When you say the Council informed you that it was your responsibility, was that verbally or in writing ?
    When you say that you have documents going back to the 1960's saying that the council will maintain the land. This means nothing to a council (unless they want it) The chances are that 60 years ago it was a different council as due to re-organisation in the 1970's and 1980's councils merged etc. On a Private Road I owned the previous council had a documented access agreement which included maintenance. Then they stopped using the road, the council changed. I asked a council official to repair the road and he refused saying that the agreement was with the Previous council and they were not legally obliged to honour previous obligations.

    Good luck.


      They didn't say that it couldn't be enclosed - just that it couldn't be enclosed with a 7-foot high solid fence and include a house-sized garage.

      If the fence is below 1m then it probably won't need planning permission.


        I would expect to pay to maintain the land if it were mine. We have purchased land from the council which they previously cared for but now we have to do so. I doubt ratepayers would be happy to pay to maintain someone's private land. As above, fence it and use it as garden. They are unlikely to bother.
        Unshackled by the chains of idle vanity, A modest manatee, that's me


          Islandgirl I have no problem maintaining the land if they let me make use of it. But the council want it to remain open space. They have stated I need to apply for change of use of the land from open space to private garden. They won’t grant this. They want me to maintain it but won’t let me enclose any of it. TEd they have told me I will never be allowed to enclose any of the land or change its use (even though on there own planning map land isn’t classified as anything) but they say I need to apply to make it private garden. The garage is 6m by 6m(so not house size just a double) and I have submitted plans for a garage with a flat roof which has been rejected. They have informed me the fence style is not the issue as I said I would change it to a metal fence with rails so land can still be viewed.


            I've just looked at the planning refusal letter. What cheeky rat bags.

            They admit the land is yours but say you can't erect fence or garage because its a loss of open space. Yet their own words confirm you are the landowner - its your space!

            Personally, I would put up a small fence, maybe 3 or 4 foot around the boundary, but definitely no higher than 6 foot. Leave it 6 months and then reapply for the garage. When applying for the garage, don't apply to increase the height of the fence.


              The council informed me in writing I would need to maintain land and trees were my responsibility.


                The council informed me in writing I would need to maintain land and trees were my responsibility.
                You may want to ask the council what legal right it has to tell you to maintain privately owned land that has trees growing on it.

                Unless there is Tree Protection Order on any of the trees, I cannot think what legislation would give a local council any power to insist that you maintain the land.

                As for fencing, Schedule 2, Part 2, Class A of the Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) (England) Order 2015 grants planning permission to erect fences, subject to the conditions stated in the GPDO.
                PART 2
                Minor operations
                Class A – gates, fences, walls etc

                Permitted development
                A. The erection, construction, maintenance, improvement or alteration of a gate, fence, wall or
                other means of enclosure.

                Development not permitted
                A.1 Development is not permitted by Class A if—
                (a) the height of any gate, fence, wall or means of enclosure erected or constructed adjacent
                to a highway used by vehicular traffic would, after the carrying out of the development,
                (i) for a school, 2 metres above ground level, provided that any part of the gate, fence,
                wall or means of enclosure which is more than 1 metre above ground level does not
                create an obstruction to the view of persons using the highway as to be likely to
                cause danger to such persons;

                (ii) in any other case, 1 metre above ground level;

                (b) the height of any other gate, fence, wall or means of enclosure erected or constructed
                would exceed 2 metres above ground level;

                (c) the height of any gate, fence, wall or other means of enclosure maintained, improved or
                altered would, as a result of the development, exceed its former height or the height
                referred to in paragraph (a) or (b) as the height appropriate to it if erected or constructed,
                whichever is the greater; or

                (d) it would involve development within the curtilage of, or to a gate, fence, wall or other
                means of enclosure surrounding, a listed building.

                Interpretation of Class A

                A.2 For the purposes of Class A, “school” includes—
                (a) premises which have changed use under Class S or T of Part 3 of this Schedule (changes
                of use) to become a state-funded school or registered nursery as defined in paragraph X of
                Part 3; and

                (b) a building permitted by Class C of Part 4 of this Schedule (temporary buildings and uses)
                to be used temporarily as a school, from the date the local planning authority is notified as
                provided in paragraph C.2(b) of Part 4.


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