England: Over the Christmas period the Department for Communities and Local Government published its Ninth Statement of New Regulation: January to June 2015 setting out the measures it anticipates bringing forward in that period (in practice between now and the General Election in May). Absent from that list are additional changes to the permitted development regime which were consulted on in July last year (see our post here). This rather suggests that these are not likely to be brought into effect before the General Election. Obviously this calls into question whether they will go ahead at all – any incoming Government may well have different priorities.
Amongst the proposed changes consulted on in July were various new proposed change of use rights including various uses (such as light industrial and warehouses) to residential. Probably most importantly to our clients though were the proposals in respect of the two temporary permitted development rights. First it was proposed to make permanent the current temporary “larger” single storey rear extensions to dwelling houses permitted development right. As it stands such permitted developments must be completed by May 2016. Second, it was also proposed to extend the permitted office (Use Class B1(a)) to residential change of use for a further three years. At present such changes of use must also be undertaken by May 2016 – the proposal was to extend this until May 2019.
In effect this is a timely reminder for householders and developers who are considering the use of either of these permitted development rights. You really must assume that these will not now be extended and hence all must be completed by May 2016. Given the length of time it will take to secure the prior approval consent and undertake the building or conversion works, time is very much of the essence and NOW is the moment to act! If you are considering using these temporary permitted development rights then get in touch with us.