Agenda item

PL.2023.00303: Moor Farm, Ashton Road, Minety, Malmesbury, Wilts, SN16 9QP

Retention of barn for equestrian purposes.


Public Participation


Ms Kerry Pfleger – RAW Planning – spoke in support of the application.


The Development Management Team Leader, Adrian Walker, introduced a report which recommended that the application for the retention of a barn for equestrian uses be granted subject to the conditions outlined in the report. Key details were stated to include the principle of development, impact on the character of the locality and on the living conditions of adjacent occupiers.


Attention was drawn to the history of the site. The Committee were informed that the subject barn was erected under Permitted Development in 2017, but that development was not undertaken in accordance with the approved drawings. However, despite the discrepancy with the drawings, as the building had been substantially completed for a period of at least four years, under Section 171B of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990, it was now immune from enforcement action for agricultural use. It was noted that there had been a recent change in use of the surrounding land and buildings to equestrian use, approved earlier in 2023, so the Applicant was seeking consent to retain and repurpose the barn for use as part of their business. The barn was an existing lawful building and the application before the Committee was for its conversion from agricultural to equestrian use.


Members of the Committee then had the opportunity to ask questions of the Development Management Team Leader.


Details were sought about why a change of use was being requested given that the building already had permission for agricultural use, enabling the storage of hay. The Development Management Team Leader clarified that the permission, if granted, would allow the storage of other equipment in association with the surrounding equestrian land. The building was currently in use mainly for storage, so it was a retrospective application, although the use of the barn could change slightly. It was currently possible to store hay in the barn for equestrian consumption.


In response to queries about which mechanisms would be in force to enforce a refusal of the application, the Development Management Team Leader acknowledged that it would be difficult to enforce.


Queries were asked about whether the granting of equestrian use for the barn would enable it to host a manége. The Development Management Team Leader confirmed that it would be possible to add a condition that the barn could only be used for storage. He also highlighted that the subject barn fell within the boundary of application PL/2022/03080, which was approved earlier in 2023. As this approved application permitted a change of use for equestrian purposes for the land, then the subject barn arguably already benefitted from equestrian use by default. 


The Development Management Team Leader stated that the barn was further from the nearest listed building than if it had been built in the location allowed under Permitted Development.


The member of the public then had the opportunity to present their views to the Committee as detailed above.


The Unitary Division Member, Cllr Chuck Berry, then spoke about the application, stating that his preference would be for it to remain as storage. He raised concerns about the planning history of the site and potential commercial use of the site for a livery.


In response to the points raised by the public and the Unitary Division Member, the Head of Development Management confirmed that previous applications specified that the stables on site could be used for solely for the keeping of competition livery horses trained at Moor Farm and the horses personally owned by the residents. It would not be permitted to use the site as a full livery.


So that the Committee had something to debate, Cllr Berry, seconded by Cllr Elizabeth Threlfall, proposed that the application be granted subject to the conditions outlined in the report, in addition to a further condition that the subject barn only be used for storage.


A debate followed where issues such as the history of the site, lighting and the facility being used for horse schooling were discussed. The Development Management Team Leader confirmed that assurance had already been provided about the external lighting. It was then:




To GRANT permission for the retention of the barn for equestrian purposes. Subject to the following conditions:


1. The development hereby permitted shall be begun before the expiration of three years from the date of this permission.


REASON: to comply with the provisions of Section 91 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 as amended by the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004.


2. The development hereby permitted shall be carried out in accordance with the following approved plans:


·       Location plan, block plan, elevations and floorplan ref. 2408/4.


REASON: for the avoidance of doubt and in the interests of proper planning.


3. The use of the building shall be for storage only.


REASON: To define the terms of this permission and in the interests of local amenity.




The applicant is requested to note that this permission does not affect any private property rights and therefore does not authorise the carrying out of any work on land outside their control. If such works are required, it will be necessary for the applicant to obtain the landowner’s consent before such works commence.


If you intend carrying out works in the vicinity of the site boundary, you are also advised that it may be expedient to seek your own advice with regard to the requirements of the Party Wall Act 1996.




Any alterations to the approved plans, brought about by compliance with Building Regulations or any other reason must first be agreed in writing with the Local Planning Authority before commencement of work.


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