Changes to the Use Classes
There are significant changes to how uses are now classified through the Use Classes Order.
Effectively replacing the previous A (shops, services, food and drink) B1 (business) and D (non-residential institutions, assembly and leisure) classes, is the creation of a new broader Class E (commercial, business and service) and two more specific F classes (1. learning and non-residential institutions; 2. local community).
Due to the reclassification, a number of uses previously within Class A or D that don’t fit into the new E and F classes, and several previously undefined uses have now been specifically excluded from classification and therefore become ‘Sui Generis’ (in a class of its own) meaning that changing the use of these properties would require an additional hurdles for developers:
· A public house, wine bar, or drinking establishment
· A drinking establishment with expanded food provision
· A hot food takeaway for the sale of hot food where consumption of that food is mostly undertaken off the premises
· A venue for live music performance
· A cinema
· A concert hall
· A bingo hall
· A dance hall
In making these changes, Government has also introduced a ‘material period’ that runs from 1 September 2020 until 31 July 2021 meaning that, for all the current Permitted Development rights (including those detailed above), the Use Classes in place up to the end of August 2020 will remain in effect until the end of this period. This also applies to any existing direction that restricts these rights.
For further information on how these changes may affect you and your business, please contact your local Brown&Co office here.