Lawful Development Certificate Secured for a High Voltage (HV) Substation

Delays with the planning system are often cited as a barrier to commercial development, hindering the ability of successful companies to grow and expand their facilities. Whilst new industrial development requires careful consideration, there are substantial rights available to occupiers to extend their operational buildings without the need for planning permission. Understanding these rights is paramount as it allows permission to be more rapidly secured with less cost and risk than would otherwise be required via a planning application. We have recently obtained a Lawful Development Certificate with Cheltenham Borough Council for a new High Voltage (HV) Substation on a light industrial site in Cheltenham.

The Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) (England) Order 2015 – Part 7, Class H (“the GPDO”) allows for alterations and extensions to be carried out at industrial and warehouse sites without the need for planning permission. This is subject to the following criteria which this development satisfied fully:

  • The floor area of the building must not exceed 200 square metres;
  • The gross floor area of the original building must not be exceeded by 50% or 1,000 square metres, whichever is the lesser;
  • The height of any part of the new building must not exceed the height of any existing building on site, or 15 metres, whichever is lower;
  • The height of the building being extended or altered must not exceed the height of the building being extended or altered;
  • No part of the development can be within 5 metres of the site boundary;
  • The development must not lead to a reduction in the space available for parking or turning of vehicles.

It is often assumed that infrastructure such as HV substations will require full planning permission, but this decision shows that significant structures can often be constructed on industrial sites under permitted development in the correct circumstances. There are additional criteria for sites in Conservation Areas and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, none of which were applicable in this case.

Our experienced team can help you find the best route to securing infrastructure at industrial and warehouse sites.  If you would like an initial free consultation call, then please get in touch with Joe Seymour, or 01242 895008