A-Z of Services

Farmers Guide to Permitted Development (units of 5 hectares or more)

Access and Private Ways

A new access onto a trunk or classified road requires planning permission. The formation of a private way (farm track) requires the prior notification of the Local Planning Authority and planning permission where any part of it falls within 25m of a trunk or classified road. (See also deposits of waste).

New Buildings

New buildings or structures exceeding 12m in height or 465 sqm. in floor area, or where they are within 25m of a classified road require planning permission. Prior notification to the Local Planning Authority is required for all new buildings.

Livestock & Slurry

The erection of a building, or excavations or alteration of a building, for either the accommodation of livestock or for the storage of slurry or sewage sludge requires planning permission if it is within 400m of a protected building* or 25m from a trunk or classified road.

*A non agricultural dwelling, school etc. is a protected building for the purposes of livestock buildings and slurry pits.

Mineral Extraction

Mineral extraction is only permitted without planning permission where it falls outside 25m of a classified road and where the extracted material is to be used on the farm holding for agricultural purposes, such as the making of a new farm track. Excavation and deposit of material on land exceeding a total of 0.5 ha require the prior notification of the Local Planning Authority.

Deposit of Waste

The deposit of waste is only permitted without planning permission where it is deposited further than 25m from a classified road and where waste is not bought on to the holding from elsewhere and where this is necessary for improving agricultural land or the making of farm roads etc. Tipping operations on areas of land exceeding 0.5 ha require prior notification to the Local Planning Authority.

Alteration to Farmhouses

Alterations and extensions to farmhouses are covered by separate provision, and, you should refer to the advice on house extensions.

Significant Extensions

Extensions or alterations to existing agricultural buildings may not require planning permission provided they are less than 10% of the volume of the original building and don't exceed the height of the existing building. However, prior notification is required.


Fences up to 2m in height do not require planning permission, provided they are not adjacent to the highway. Fences adjacent to the highway must not exceed 1m in height.

Adding Up

Buildings and structures built within two years proceeding the date of your proposed development, and falling within 90m of the proposed building count against the 465sq. m normally permitted for new buildings.


Farmers are granted planning permission for a range of development provided that it is on agricultural land comprised within an agricultural unit of 5 hectares or more and reasonably necessary for the purpose of agriculture. The development falling within the constraints described overleaf is known as permitted development and has been granted by the Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) Order 1995. Separate provisions apply to units of less than 5ha. However in most cases permitted development cannot be exercised unless a farmer or his agent has applied and received a determination as to whether the prior approval of the council will be required. Where the provisions described overleaf are exceeded a formal planning application will be necessary.

Procedure For Making A Determination

Forms can be obtained from the planning department. All applicants shall be accompanied by a written description of the proposed development, the materials to be used and a site plan identifying the site, together with the relevant fee. The development should not start start until either:

  1. You receive the written notice from the council that prior approval is not required, or
  2. Where you are advised (within 28 days) that approval is necessary, this has been given for the works, or
  3. 28 days has elapsed without any decision by the council.

The development should only be carried out in accordance with the submitted details and must be carried out within 5 years of the date the details were submitted to the council, or the date of the council’s approval, whichever is the latest.