Operation of the Use Classes Order
Operation of the Use Classes Order

The following Planning guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Operation of the Use Classes Order
  • Guidance
  • Changes of use within a use class do not require planning permission
  • Use classes specified in the Use Classes Order
  • Sui generis uses and uses not within the Use Classes Order
  • Deciding which class the use falls within
  • Intensification of use
  • Restricting the operation of the Use Classes Order through planning conditions and obligations
  • Building Regulations
  • Changes of use between certain classes do not require planning permission
  • more

The making of 'any material change in the use of any buildings or other land’ is ‘development’ for the purposes of section 55 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 (TCPA 1990). Planning permission is required for development so it is always necessary to consider whether a change of use of land is material and therefore constitutes ‘development’.

However, TCPA 1990, s 55(2)(f) provides that a change of use does not amount to development and therefore does not require planning permission, where the former use and the new use are both within the same class specified in an order made under that paragraph. For example, planning permission would not be required for a change of use from a post office to a hairdresser, as both uses fall within class A1 (shops). However, physical alterations to the premises to facilitate the change of use may require planning permission.

The Town and Country Planning (Use Classes) Order 1987, SI 1987/764 (the Use Classes Order) is an order made pursuant to TCPA 1990, s 55(2)(f). It puts uses of land and buildings into broad categories set out in the schedule of the Use Classes Order. Each category is known as a 'use class'.

The Use Classes Order also list a series of uses which are expressly stated not to fall within any of the use classes

Related documents: