31 May 2018

Guernsey planning matters: I have a redundant glasshouse site. Can I obtain planning permission to use the site for something else?

When the Island Development Plan ("IDP") was adopted in November 2016, it introduced greater scope to redevelop redundant glasshouse sites.

The States of Guernsey recognised that the removal of redundant glasshouses is expensive and in the absence of adequate incentives to do so, it was likely that many glasshouse sites would continue to be left derelict to the detriment of the appearance of the island.

The IDP allows some limited development if the glass and structure is no longer required or capable of being used for its authorised purpose, and provided that the proposals meet a number of criteria set out in the relevant policies.

The relevant policies for a site will depend on where the site is. Land inside a main centre, in an outer area or in a local centre will be assessed against the policies relating to those particular areas.

For sites outside of the centres (where most of them are) there is potential for a redundant glasshouse site to be used for, amongst other things, small scale industrial use; storage and distribution; incorporation into the curtilage of a building; harnessing renewable energy; or for a campsite or outdoor recreation.

In all cases, proposals will need to demonstrate that the development would not have an unacceptable adverse impact on the character and amenity of the locality concerned.

A number of other IDP policies may be relevant to any planning application depending on the proposed use. A thorough assessment of the policies will be needed to determine the potential uses and to ensure proposals would comply with the IDP. In those circumstances, it is advisable to enter into pre-application discussions with the Planning Service and to seek professional advice.

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