Class Q Fall Back for Former Agricultural Building to a Dwelling in North Warwickshire

8th February, 2019 by Acorus in General

The client, a long term customer of Acorus, identified a former grain store as being surplus to farm requirements.

The land and building was off lying from the main farm so was only used occasionally.  The location of the building made it an ideal residential scheme which could be progressed as permitted development under Class Q of the General Permitted Development Order.  

The rules for permitted development limit the extent of the scheme to the confines of the building so a simple modest single storey conversion was progressed.  This was approved by North Warwickshire Borough Council.

Grain stores are functional agricultural buildings so are not designed with conversion in mind and can appear almost too large.  However, the simple steel frame structure can give a ‘blank canvas’.  An alternative scheme was produced taking sections of the building away and creating a more interesting internal and external space.  A full planning application was submitted to achieve permission for this scheme.

Planning permission was granted and Acorus Property Sales began marketing the barn for sale.  Further details are available here and as an example project.  We look forward to seeing the scheme completed.

For further advice please contact:

Brian Barrow  BSc (Hons), MRICS
Rural Planning Director 


Class Q is the permitted development of an agricultural building to residential use. There are criteria that apply i.e. the building must have been use solely for agricultural use on or before 20th March 2013; the dimensions of the building must not change; there must not be excessive rebuilding to enable the building to be converted into a dwelling. There are also restrictions on the number and size of dwellings the building can be converted to.

For more details refer to the following Class Q information sheet.

Fall back in planning terms is an argument whereby a case which might not necessarily be in line with current policy is nonetheless acceptable due to what can be achieved under other legislation.  If the principle of residential development can be established via for example Class Q permitted development rights, this creates a fall back position which can be applied to a full planning application.

The principle of this approach has been used successfully in planning applications and appeals.


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