Decision details

Decision details

Enforcement Notice for Land at Snapdown ref 13650

Decision Maker: Service Manager, Development Management Team

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: No


Approval to serve Enforcement Notice to remedy the alleged breach of planning control. The breach of planning control alleged is within the last 4 years there has been unauthorised development consisting of operational development comprising:
1. The siting of timber stable type buildings on the land and storage of non-agricultural items and domestic paraphernalia;
2. The formation of an access track to the southeast of the site, the construction of soil bank/earth bunds, and creation of foundation holes;
An Enforcement Notice should be issued to remedy the alleged breach of planning control.

Reasons for the decision:

1.1. An Enforcement Notice should be issued to remedy the alleged breach of planning control. The Council considers it expedient to issue this notice for the following reasons:

1.2. The land is located within the countryside where the North Devon and Torridge Local Plan (NDTLP) and National Planning Policy Framework seek to restrict certain forms of development in the interests of sustainable development. The land is currently being used for the stationing of 3 timber stable type buildings whilst a further timber stable type building is under construction (the base is currently in situ). Whilst one of the stable type buildings is empty the other two are being used for storing items not linked to an agricultural use.

1.3. The works which have taken place are not considered to be justified in respect of Policy ST07 of the North Devon and Torridge Local Plan, constituting unjustified development in the countryside demonstrating no local, social needs or economic benefits or reason for a countryside location.
1.4. In addition the current use of the land would not appear to fall within any of the rural economy criteria outlined in policy DM14: Rural Economy, given that the use does not appear to have strong links to agriculture.

1.5. The use has changed the visual appearance of the site. The provision of these timber structures and access track on elevated land (approximately 90-100 metres Above Ordnance Datum) is visible from the public realm and neither conserves nor enhances the landscape qualities of this rural area and is contrary to Policies ST14 and DM08A of the NDTLP and paragraph 180 of the National Planning Policy Framework.

1.6. It is considered the erection of these buildings are not justified in this isolated rural location in the open countryside and is contrary to Policies ST01, ST07 and DM14 of the North Devon and Torridge Local Plan.

1.7. The Council considers it is necessary to remedy the breach of planning control by the removal of the buildings and paraphernalia not used in connection with agriculture and that lesser steps cannot deal with the issue. There is no functional requirement for the retention of the buildings on the land insofar as they do not meet any of the criteria listed under Policies ST07 or DM14. It is also necessary and in the public interest to take enforcement action since otherwise the development could become lawful with the passage of time which as stated above is contrary to long established planning policies seeking to protect the character of the area.

Alternative options considered:

3.1. The owner of the site has been advised that the retention of the works and development is not likely to receive Officer support therefore submitting an application for their retention is not likely to be successful. They have been requested to remove the development but there has been no compliance to date.

Publication date: 06/06/2024

Date of decision: 05/06/2024

Accompanying Documents: