WHAT IS CLASS C PLANNING USEAGE?
DO I NEED PLANNING PERMISSION TO CHANGE TO OR FROM CLASS C USE?
Our FAQ Series answers some of the most commonly searched for queries across TownPlanning.info. Today we take a look at planning use classes that include various forms of residential accommodation – the C class uses.
For more information on use classes and planning permission, see our Guide to Planning Change of Use and the Use Classes Order.
USE CLASS C – ACCOMMODATION
Use Class C1 – Hotels and Hostels
Planning Use Class C1 includes hotels, boarding or guest houses or hostels where no significant element of care is provided.
Change of use from class C1 can be made under permitted development rights to a state-funded school (and back to previous lawful use), subject to the prior approval process.
Use Class C2 – Residential Institutions
Planning Use Class C2 includes residential accommodation with elements of care being provided to people in need of it, residential schools, colleges or training centres, hospitals, and nursing homes.
Change of use from class C2 can be made under permitted development rights to a state-funded school (and back to previous lawful use), subject to the prior approval process.
Use Class C2A – Secure Residential Institutions
Planning Use Class C2A includes prisons, young offenders’ institutions, detention centres, secure training centres etc.
Change of use from class C2A can be made under permitted development rights to a state-funded school (and back to previous lawful use), subject to the prior approval process.
Use Class C3 – Houses, Flats, Apartments
Planning Use Class C3 includes dwelling houses, flats, apartments etc (whether or not as main residence) by:
- A single person or by people to be regarded as forming a single household
- Not more than 6 residents (if over six, then becomes ‘sui-generis’)
Change of use from class C3 can be made under permitted development rights to C4 without the need for a planning application. Beware however that in many areas, that right is removed through us of what are known as ‘Article 4 Directions’. Check with your local authority.
Use Class C4 – Small HMOs (Houses in Multiple Occupation)
Planning Use Class C4 covers small, shared dwelling houses occupied by between 3-6 unrelated individuals as their only or main residence, who share basic amenities such as a kitchen or bathroom.
Class C4 does not include HMOs of over six people, which are ‘sui generis’ – i.e. do not fall within any use class. Planning permission is required for any large HMO of over six people.
Change of use from class C4 can be made under permitted development rights to C3 without the need for a planning application.
This guide is correct at the time of writing in September 2021 and is intended as an initial reference guide only. For further details, refer to the Use Classes Order 1987 (as amended) and the Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) (England) Order 2015 (as amended).
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