Planning consent removal proposed for rural Scotland

Mandatory planning permission could be removed for certain types of development in Scotland as part of proposals to tackle rural depopulation and support local economies.

The Scottish government is consulting on whether to expand permitted development rights (PDRs), which remove the need to apply for planning permission, across 16 development types.

Under the plans, small-scale developments, such as the conversion of agricultural buildings to deliver more homes in rural areas, could automatically be given the go-ahead.

See also: What you need to check before modifying old farm buildings

The development of larger operational farm buildings, including sheds and polytunnels, and developments that help address climate change could also be exempted.

Planning minister Kevin Stewart said: “I believe these reforms will help support work aimed at increasing the rural population, support succession planning for farmers, and provide an opportunity for the planning system to positively contribute to the long-term sustainability of rural businesses and communities.”

Rural economy secretary Fergus Ewing said the reforms will bring benefits for communities seeking housing solutions and agricultural businesses looking to develop, as well as helping more young people stay in rural Scotland.

For more information and to respond to the consultation, visit the Scottish government’s website.