Planning permission is typically not at the top of any horse owners list of priorities unless perhaps you are looking into building new facilities. Proposals to create permanent equine facilities where you are physically building on or altering the land will obviously always need planning permission, but the use of land for grazing horses and the siting of temporary structures can be more of a grey area.

At Carver Knowles we have a great deal of experience in all aspects of planning and so called ‘horsiculture’. Over the coming weeks we will be blogging about all areas of equine planning with this week being focussed on permanent structures.

The building of a permanent equine structure, say a new stable block, manège or gallops, is always going to require planning permission as you are physically undertaking a form of development. Horses are now common place in the rural landscape and typically Councils do not have major issues with equine developments provided that they are sympathetically sited and designed. Landscape impact is generally the key issue with highways impacts close behind especially where the proposal is for a business use. We would always suggest that you seek professional planning advice at the outset so that any issues can be identified and overcome so a well thought out proposal is submitted to the Council. This will ultimately make the planning process much smoother and more likely to lead to a successful application.

Ellen Cottrell at Carver Knowles has recently secured full planning consent for Mr and Mrs A in Worcestershire for the retrospective change of use of an agricultural barn to stables and for the construction of a manège.

Mr and Mrs A explain ‘We approached Carver Knowles to support a planning application that involved a change of use of part of our property from agricultural to equestrian. This was specifically an application for the construction of an open sand school for dressage and retrospective application for a barn to be used for stabling. They were local, quick to respond and came up with a pragmatic and cost effective solution to our requirement. They were also able to recommend an excellent ecologist to undertake the required Phase 1 ecological survey. Reports were produced quickly, fine tuning and finalisation were straight forward and ultimately the planning application was successful. There were only a few minor conditions that we were expecting, as a result of discussions with our consultant Ellen. I would happily re-engage them for future property development that required planning activities.”

 If you, like Mr and Mrs A, require assistance with any aspect of equine planning then please do not hesitate to contact Ellen Cottrell on 01684 853400 or by email