Do Sheep Shelters Require Planning Permission?

If you keep sheep, a sheep shelter is a necessary storage structure to make animal care easier. 

Are there any specific rules or planning permits you need to follow when you’re interested in building one?

Key Takeaway:

Whether a sheep shelter requires planning permission to build depends on local rules. It varies based on the type of development too. Permanent shelters more often need permits. Mobile shelters tend to have more lenient policies.

If you’re interested in developing your sheep shelter project, read on! 

We’ll break down the basics of the planning rules you’re likely to run into.

do I need planning permission for a sheep shelter

Do Animal Shelters Need Planning Permission?

First, laws about building on agricultural land can depend on where you’re located. 

Different planning authorities can have varying laws about development rights for agricultural buildings.

But, a few other factors influence whether you need a permit for your new sheep shelter. 

The type of shelter you build and where you build it on your farm can affect permit needs.

Permanent Animal Shelters

When it comes to animal shelters, you have two primary options. 

This includes stationary, permanent shelters, and mobile field shelters. 

As the name suggests, permanent shelters stay up all the time in the same place. 

They’re a stagnant feature on your farmland until they’re torn down or age too much.

These are often more subject to local zoning laws, but whether you need a permit can vary.

This depends on the size and location of a permanent shelter quite a bit. 

Many areas have size limits too. 

This means your animal shelter doesn’t need a permit unless it’s so many square feet or larger. 

This exact measurement varies depending on your local planning permission board. 

Mobile Animal Shelters

Mobile shelters come with the added benefit of less required planning permission. 

Still, certain requirements may need you to apply for planning permission anyways. 

For example, if your land is heavily-developed, you’ll likely need a plan and approval to build.

It’s worth taking a moment to look at the definition of a mobile shelter. 

To start, mobility is an obvious factor. 

For something to qualify as a mobile shelter, it has to move. 

Moving it around from time to time after it’s built is often encouraged. 

Sometimes, it’s required as well.

If you decide to make your mobile shelter permanent, it’s possible to put a base down later. 

If a permanent shelter would need a permit, though, you’ll need a permit to transform the building.

All About Location

We’ve already covered different areas that have different laws. 

Still, there’s more to location and zoning laws than the state or county you live in alone.

Where your land is and what type of land you live on play a role in zoning laws. 

For instance, planning regulations are much stricter if you live in a National Park. 

This is because National Parks have special protections. 

You would not only need a permit here, but it would be much harder to get your hands on.

What’s around your farm or home can matter as well. 

If you live next to a listed property, this can call for stricter planning regulations.

What Can You Put on Agricultural Land Without Planning Permission?

If you’re interested in building on agricultural land, you have a few options. 

Some types of development don’t need as much department approval and oversight.

Fencing Shorter Than 6′ Feet

For one, if you want to add a fence to your farm, this doesn’t need approval. 

The same applies to any gates you’d like to add with this fencing. 

Yet, fences above a certain height can include extra planning rules. 

Usually, these rules come into effect for the development of fences above 6′ feet.

Farming Equipment

You’re also free to add farm machinery to your farm without involving a planning staff. 

This refers to large equipment, including vehicles such as tractors and combines.

Some Agricultural Units

Finally, some animal shelters don’t need permission from your local planning committee. 

Building these without going through the paperwork and hassle of a permit is possible. 

This can include mobile animal shelters. 

It may also include options like small sheds or greenhouses.

What Size Agricultural Building Can I Build Without Planning Permission?

An animal shelter may need development permission depending on the size as well. 

Varying locales have different laws depending on their department of regional planning.

Take a few states within the United States, for example. 

In Sacramento, California, the Department of Community Development requires zoning permission for structures 5,000′ square feet or more. 

They still need inspections of the agricultural unit throughout the process.

But, the rules are quite different, jumping to the opposite coast. 

Fauquier County, Virginia, requires a zoning permit for anything larger than 256′ square feet. 

Yet, you may need extra permits here, such as a Land Disturbing Permit.

To ensure your agricultural unit goes to plan without any problems, it’s best to do some research. 

Looking into the exact laws in your city, town, or county can help save you some headaches. 

It’ll also help you finish the job quicker and with more efficiency. 

Otherwise, you risk interruptions to delay the project.

What Happens If You Fail to Recieve Planning Permission?

When your sheep shelter requires planning permission, it’s best to apply. 

If you don’t, it will likely lead to inconvenient consequences.

Once again, different planning commissions may handle these situations in different ways. 

Common consequences include fines and pauses in construction.

The planning commission may have you apply for retrospective permission as well. 

This is a second chance to follow agricultural zoning laws and avoid further penalties. 

This could lead to a late license to build. 

If your building doesn’t meet zoning laws, it could halt the project altogether.

All in all, you’ll avoid problems and delays with much more ease if you apply before you start building. 

If your shelter doesn’t need planning permission, you’re in luck! 

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Growing up amidst the sprawling farms of the South, Wesley developed a profound connection with farm animals from a young age. His childhood experiences instilled in him a deep respect for sustainable and humane farming practices. Today, through, Wesley shares his rich knowledge, aiming to inspire and educate others about the joys and intricacies of rural life.

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