More Government updates in relation to permitted development for conversions of agricultural buildings.

1 May 2024

Class Q was updated on 30th April 2024, with the changes taking effect from 21st May 2024. Any applications on or after this date, will be subject to the new limits.

The main differences, as a consequence of the updates, are the number of dwellings, sizes of dwellings and extensions.

In relation to number, whereas the existing Permitted Development right (PDR) allows for the conversion of a former agricultural building to five dwellings, the revisions, from 21st May, will allow for up to ten dwellings. 

In relation to size, the maximum amount of space you can convert will be increased to 1,000 m², however the maximum size of any dwelling will be 150 m² – therefore in order to have ten new dwellings under Class Q, each one will need to be 100 m² each.

In relation to extensions, you will be able to extend to the rear of the barn or agricultural building by up to 4m on any hard surface which was present on or before 24th July 2023.

An additional advantage for owners of barns is that far more barns will qualify under Class Q, including barns that are no longer used for agricultural purposes. It is noted however that the revisions to the PDR do not extend to barns used for equestrian purposes unless they form part of an agricultural unit.

Class R was also updated on 30th April 2024.

Class R which previously allowed for an agricultural building to be changed to B8 (Storage & distribution), C1 (Hotels) or Use Class E (Commercial, business or service), has now been extended to allow for additional uses.

Class R now allows for agricultural buildings be converted to Use Class B2  (General industrial), Use Class F2(c)  (Outdoor sport and recreation) or the provision of agricultural training from 21st May 2024.

The former limit of 500 sq m has risen to 1,000 sq m.

It is therefore quite conceivable that larger agricultural units could now have 10 dwellings and a hotel using 2,000 sq m of agricultural buildings!!

The MEP team has a wealth of experience in proposals involving the conversion of barns to alternative uses.  Please do contact us should you wish to discuss your projects with us.

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