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Changes to Permitted Development Rights for Commercial Property

On 15 April The Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development)(England) Order 2015 came into force, introducing new permitted development rights. The changes are designed to promote growth in the economy by allowing land and buildings to be put to the most appropriate use.

 What are the new permitted development rights?

The following changes of use may now be made without the need to obtain planning permission:

• A change from Class A1 (retail) to A2 (financial and professional services)
• A change from Class A1 or A2 to A3 (restaurants and cafes)
• A change from Class A1 or A2 to D2 (assembly and leisure uses)
• Until 15 April 2018, a change from Class B8 (storage and distribution) to C3 (residential).

Do any conditions apply to the exercise of these rights?

Whilst planning permission is not required for these changes, most of them are subject to conditions and require prior notification of the details to the local planning authority. So the right to make a change of use is by no means unfettered.

You can read more about the permitted use of land and buildings and how to change the use on our Property Information Pages here:


What do you think about these changes to the planning system? Will your premises benefit from these regulatory relaxations? Let us know your views.

By Iain Mackintosh

Simply-4-Business Ltd Registered in England and Wales No. 4868909 Unit 100, Parkway House, Sheen Lane, London SW14 8LS