Rural Planning and Farm Development
How do we achieve planning permission on a farm or rural property, which can provide development that adds value to rural businesses?
With the onset of BREXIT and revision to rural based subsidy schemes, the planning system plays a key role for the future of our farmers and rural communities. Planning applications require a detailed and specialist justification, quite often accompanied by a number of specialist professional reports.
At Foxes Rural Consultants we add value and development to a wide client portfolio for various circumstances.
We work closely with a number of Local Planning Authorities to ensure that our advice is tailored to our clients and achieve the maximum likelihood of success.
We are incredibly experienced in all areas of rural planning and development which include, but not limited to:
General purpose buildings
All types of permitted development rights
Class Q permitted development from agriculture to residential
Class R permitted development rights from agriculture to commercial
Full planning permission change of use to residential and commercial
Farm accesses to include farm tracks and roads
Outline planning permission applications
Farm workers dwellings and cottages
Planning enforcement, including enforcement notices, stop notices, breach of condition
Certificate of lawfulness
Local plan representations
Small scale residential development projects
Farm diversification projects
Equestrian including stabling, menages, DIY livery, full livery.
Glamping including pods, yurts, shepherds huts
Agricultural and rural workers dwellings
New rural housing
Renewable energy installations
Expert witness for rural planning matters
If you are considering a planning project on your farm, whether a new venture or expansion of an existing one, we can assist you in exploring the potential of your rural property.
We can provide assistance and advice for your own application or a complete service from conception to decision with:
Innovations and assessment of options for your property
Business plans to include budgets and financial forecasts.
Specialist agricultural justification reports
Supporting planning policy statements and design and access statements
Plans and drawings for your project
Project management of other professional reports and surveys such as structural, flooding, topography, biodiversity, arboricultural, noise and odour, highways and sustainable drainage
Application forms and submission
Management of applications
If you are approached by a house builder or developer, make sure you speak to us to take tailored and strategic advice.
Farm diversification is the core of our own farming businesses which have a great success trend to draw from.
Modern farming businesses tend to have some form of diversification operating. This is a consequence of the challenges faced by farmers which are greater than ever before, but this in turn also creates opportunities. Diversification enterprises have become integral to the operation of farming businesses.Diversification can lead to an additional income stream, with employment opportunities for the next generation. The diversification can also offer increased business stability and viability together with the optimisation of existing or under utilised assets.
It can be quite common for diversification to also include strategic planning for house building or commercial developments within Local Plans. We therefore also advise on the negotiation of option, promotional or joint venture agreements, together with offering a tailored service to developer send outs and establishing the development potential of your land.
As with any new business venture, there are various elements that need to be carefully considered before embarking into new markets. There needs to be a thorough assessment of market opportunities together with how a diversification venture may fit a business. Consideration also needs to be given to formal agreements and factors such as management of the business venture.
Foxes Rural Consultants can assist with a wide range of diversification projects, to include, but not limited to:
We are one of the few consultants in the region to offer specialist expertise for rural grant applications. We have extensive expertise of the grant processes and have dealt with LEADER, the Growth Programme, the Countryside Productivity Scheme and other small scale grant schemes in the past.
There are quite often grant schemes available for farmers, landowners and rural businesses. With the grant schemes and application windows regularly under review, it can be quite difficult to keep up to date with opportunities available to you.
Grants should be considered and monitored regularly as opportunities arise for new diversification ventures, agricultural improvements and ongoing business investment and training. We have extensive knowledge of the grant application process and can assist with:
Initial feasibility studies
Business plans and financial forecasts
We are experts in providing advice onfarming agreements which include but are not limited to:
Farm Business Tenancies (FBTs)
Contract Farming agreements
Share farming arrangements
We advise clients of the entire process relating to such agreements together with the legal implications, whether this involves renegotiation of existing arrangements or the preparation of new agreements.
Contract Farming Agreements can be prepared in a wide variety of formats and there can be varying arrangements in respect of how payments are split or calculated.
Commercial Leases and Business Rates
At the core of farm diversification there is often a requirement for the preparation of commercial leases and licences to formally document occupation of third parties on farms and rural properties.
We regularly advise comprehensive advice on and prepare:
Heads of Terms
Lease renewals and rent negotiations
It is important with any commercial let that a formal agreement is written to ensure that the terms and basis of occupation are clearly set out and to ensure that you can recover occupation of the premises under certain circumstances.
We can also provide advice on business rates and any reliefs or exmeptions that may be available in respect of commercial occupations.
We regularly act for both landlords and tenants in respect of business rates. We have extensive experience of corresponding with the rating officers and Local Authorities and can assist in providing professional advice to clients in respect of their business rates position.
We are professional consultants which specialise in:
Business rates appraisals
Reducing business rates liability
Business rates appeals
Small Business Rates Relief
Back rating assessments and liabilities
Providing comprehensive comparable research
Interpretating rating legislation to individual circumstances
Business rates can be complex and you should ensure that you undertake a full review to assess your business rates liability.
Basic Payment Scheme
The Basic Payment Scheme is incremental in providing farm businesses with key income. As a farm business it is critical that a claim is submitted each year under the Basic Payment Scheme in an accurate and timely manner to ensure that you receive the full subsidy payment.
We have extensive knowledge of the Basic Payment Scheme together with proposals under BREXIT.
All Basic Payment Scheme applications need to be submitted online and Foxes Rural Consultants are registered agents at the RPA and can handle your claim for you.
To be eligible to claim under the Basic Payment Scheme applicants must:
Hold relevant entitlements
Meet the criteria of an active farmer
Have a minimum holding of 5ha
Have eligible land at their disposal at the required times
Comply with greening criteria
Comply with the Basic Payment Scheme handbook and cross compliance obligations
Have appropriate crop diversification
Meet the requirements of Ecological Focus Areas (EFAs)