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News & Insight

Temporary Campsites for Recreational Purposes

20th July 2023

From 26 July 2023, you will be able to use your land as a temporary campsite for up to 60 days per calendar year with up to 50 pitches. This is a significant increase from the previous 28 days allowed but there are now some specific requirements and limitations to their use to be aware of.

Firstly, it is important to note that the right only applies to tents and motorhomes/campervans. It does not allow for the siting of standard touring caravans.

Also, any campsite will be required to provide on-site movable facilities which must include toilets and waste disposal facilities.

You are also required to notify your council in writing before the campsite use starts each year and provide a site plan showing the extent of the site and the particulars of the waste disposal and toilet facilities. The notification must also set out the dates that the land will be used as a campsite.

If your land lies within Flood Zone 2 or 3 then a 56-day prior approval application will be required to be submitted to the council before you can set up your temporary campsite. This can have implications for timescales, and you will need to provide the council with a site-specific flood risk assessment, including provision for flood warning and evacuation as part of the application. Along with the fees associated with submitting an application for prior approval, flood risk assessments must be undertaken by competent, technical experts and can be costly to produce depending on the circumstances of the site.

The new rights do not apply to areas comprising scheduled ancient monuments, safety hazard areas, military explosive areas, Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs), or where there are listed buildings present. If you wish to operate a temporary recreational campsite and one of these restrictions apply, you will need to apply to the relevant council for full planning permission.

It’s certainly good news to see the introduction of this new permitted development right allowing landowners to make better use of land for campsites but this isn’t without red tape!

You are able to continue using the simpler 28-day temporary use rights for camping until 26 July 2024 if you’d prefer. But if you are thinking that you’d like to make use of the new provisions and would like advice on whether they apply to your site, how to notify your council, or seek prior approval in a flood zone, get in touch and we can help.