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Could changes to permitted development rights benefit your farm? 

Could changes to permitted development rights benefit your farm? 

If you’re looking for opportunities to add to your income stream, then recent changes to permitted development rights could help you on your diversification journey. 


Converting buildings for commercial use 

Do you have unused agricultural buildings on your farm that would make the perfect commercial business premises? 

Under the updated Class R of the permitted development right, which covers conversion of buildings to commercial use, it’s now easier to convert your agricultural land or buildings for commercial purposes. 

This means you could make better use of your existing assets by converting your unused buildings into a new revenue stream such as: 

  • A farm shop selling your produce 

  • Holiday accommodation, such as a B&B or cottage 

  • Outdoor activities like paint balling or miniature golf 


Creating new housing 

There have also been changes made to Class Q, which covers changing agricultural buildings to dwellings. 

From 21 May, farmers will be able to convert agricultural buildings to create up to 10 homes without having to submit a planning application. 

This amendment could provide new opportunities for farmers, such as: 

  • Creating rental properties or holiday homes 

  • Providing housing for family members or farm workers 

  • Creating future investment opportunities 


How will this change affect farmers? 

These development changes could offer a huge benefit to farmers who already have existing agricultural buildings which are suitable for conversion. 

However, it’s important to fully understand these new changes and how they could impact your farm. You can learn more about the changes in the DEFRA Farming Blog here:

If you are looking to add an additional income stream to your farm, you will find inspiration, suppliers, and practical advice at the Farm Business Innovation Show, 6-7 November at the NEC Birmingham. 

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Apply for a Stand

View all Show News & Insights


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