Victory for farmer in planning appeal case

A Gloucestershire farmer who overturned an enforcement notice served on him by his local council has warned other farmers not to fall foul of the planning system.

The case started two years ago when Richard Carter secured planning consent from Stroud District Council for the retention of one new building and the erection of another new building at Pigeon House Farm, subject to certain planning conditions. The main condition restricted livestock occupation so that it was only permitted due to adverse weather, birthing, or for quarantine.

A TB outbreak in November 2007 and a resulting TB2 movement restriction notice resulted in a shortage of livestock housing for weaned calves on the farm so Mr Carter used the building under planning consent at Pigeon House Farm.

But a local resident complained to Stroud District Council, claiming an intensive livestock unit existed, producing excessive noise and smell and the cattle were housed in contravention of the planning condition.

The council upheld the complaint and issued an enforcement notice, which Mr Carter successfully appealed, as the resident’s claims could not be substantiated. The planning inspector who quashed the enforcement notice confirmed that the need to accommodate cattle as a result of TB met the quarantine criteria.

“I would warn other farmers not to be intimidated by legal enforcement action when they are well within the letter of the law and following good agricultural practices,” Mr Carter said.

“Too often our industry faces unnecessary hurdles and obstacles which can damage commercial operations, all due to a lack of awareness and understanding.”

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