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Temporary changes of use of smaller commercial units

Changes from:

Classes A1 (shops), A2 (financial and professional services), A3 (restaurants and cafes), A4 (drinking establishments), Class A5 (hot food takeaways), B1 (business), D1 (non-residential institutions) and D2 (assembly and leisure)


Class A1 (shops), Class A2 (financial and professional services), Class A3 (restaurants and cafes) or Class B1 (business)

From 30 May 2013 to 30 May 2016 it may be permitted development to temporarily change the use of buildings for up to 2 years for various uses as set out above so long as:

a.   The change of use relates to no more than 150 square metres of floor space in the building;
b.   The site has not at any time in the past relied upon this facility;
c.   The site is not nor forms part of a military explosives storage area;
d.   The site is not nor forms part of a safety hazard area;
e.   The building is not a listed building or a scheduled monument.

You should also check to make sure that no planning conditions have been imposed on earlier planning permissions which remove permitted development rights to change to another use.

Prior to undertaking the change of use the developer is to notify the Council of the date that new use will begin, and what that use will be. If this does not occur the change of use will not be lawful. It is not possible to retrospectively do this and a full application for planning permission will be necessary.

Within the 2 year period it is possible to change the use to a different use within the list, provided that the Council is first notified of that change of use.

At the end of the 2 year period the temporary use must cease and the use of the building will revert to its original use.

We have produced an application form  PDF (185 KB)which you can use to inform us of the temporary change of use which you are intending to undertake.

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