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Can a Parish Council seek to build a commercial premises on the Recreation Ground?

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Can my parish council erect a prefab unit on the local recreation ground that will be used for commercial purposes? Are there limitations on the commercial use of village greens?
Thanks.
by (360 points)

2 Answers

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Best answer
Depends on several factors. Who owns the land? Is planning permission required? What are the commercial premises defined as ( community cafe or sex shop?) has the council proposed and passed the scheme to do so and have the community been suitably consulted on their intention? plus 101 other questions.
by (15.5k points)
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Hi thanks for your response.
1. The Council owns the land.
2. Yes planning permission is required.
3. They are calling it a temporary Cafe, though it will cost in excess of £80,000. They propose it will operate 12 hours a day / 7 days a week and will seek tenders for its operation.
4. No there has been no consultatation for this scheme, and the council is using old 2016 survey data to support their arguments.

Are there any limitations on commercial use of village greens?
Thanks for the clarifications which makes answering possibly more helpful. I assume that from your question you ( and others) are opposed to such a scheme. If the council wish to provide such an amenity for the community then I cannot understand why it is referred to as " temporary cafe". Whether they can operate it on the 12/7 timescale will of course depend on planners. Whether the planners will accept such out of date data when considering the application is unsure as such requirements as traffic and environmental impact have been ramped up in the last few years. You are of course entitled to place your planning objections of the scheme to the planners when they consider the application for change of use and building regs. ( as are all interested parties)
You also have an ideal opportunity to confront the PC over this matter at the annual Parish meeting ( held by law in May) and request answers from them.

 It may be worth checking to see whether this area is registered as a community asset ( Local Authority) and also seek from the council ( FOI) or land registry sight of the deeds which may hold exclusions or covenants on the lands use. It is not unusual for land bought or donated to the PC to have caveats or covenants included as to future use by the original seller or donator. There are organisations which help protect such things as village greens and they may help ( google it)
Hope this helps a little
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Yes, there are legal limitations on what you can do with village greens and/or recreation grounds  it depends on whether the space has any official designations or protection.   

https://www.oss.org.uk/what-do-we-fight-for/village-greens/protecting-village-greens/

by (260 points)

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