BCP Council (Bournemouth): Dan Wilden is pleased to have secured a flexible planning permission for the use of a building for education, office and storage uses. The building is question is in the Southbourne area of Bournemouth and despite clearly being in commercial use for many years did not have an identifiable lawful use.

In this case our client was the Stable Family Home Trust (SFHT) who are a registered charity that provide a range of services to support people with learning disabilities to lead fulfilled and active lives. They support people to be valued members within their local community, ensuring that they have opportunities for a good social life, support to make and maintain friendships and relationships and help to find meaningful occupation, learning and employment. As part of their role in supporting people to gain employment, either voluntary or paid, the SFHT provide training, support and advice and to date have successfully helped people find all sorts of work.

The SFHT required the a flexible use of the building so that they could respond to changing needs. Flexible planning permissions are a useful planning tool which allows permission to be granted for several alternative uses with the ability to switch between them without further consent being required. Under Class V of the Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) (England) Order 2015 change of use between such uses can happen without further consent for up to 10 years following the permission. Thereafter the use (or mix of uses) which is operating at the 10 year point becomes the lawful use.

If you have found a property and you are not sure whether your proposed use would be lawful and that you may need a change of use application, why not speak to one of our consultants at Pure Town Planning.