It is important for Irish farmers to understand the planning regulation system because if as a farmer you are looking to expand, diversify or modernize you must realize how planning regulations can affect your proposals.
In Ireland all farm buildings are subject to planning regulations under the Planning Acts. Before any work begins to build you must contact the planning office in the local County Council where they will be able to tell you whether you need planning permission and, if you do, what is required. Even if you think that your development will not require planning permission, it is always wise to check first. If you go ahead without the planning permission, action may be taken against you.
In Ireland development work includes:
- Constructing a new building or other structure, e.g. house
- Changing an existing building or property, e.g. an extension.
- Changing the way in which a property is used, e.g. to change a house into a workshop or a barn into living accommodation.
There are certain structures that may be exempt to size, location and so on but it is important to discuss this with the local planning office. When applying for planning permission you should:
- Talk to your local planning office to check whether you need planning permission and what local planning policies might be relevant to you
- You should allow sufficient time i.e. at least eight weeks from the planning application submission, unless it has been indicated otherwise
- Consider the impact that your development may have on the land, environment, neighbours etc
- Consult any neighbours or others who may be affected by your development. You need to keep them on side.
- Decide if you need professional advice and assistance (e.g. surveyors) to prepare your planning application
- Obtain an application form, guidance notes & policies from your local planning office
- Confirm how many copies you will be required to submit
- Take time to complete your application to ensure it is well prepared, clear and accurate
- Ensure you have all relevant supporting plans
- Ensure that you have all supplementary documents required which can obtained from your local planning office.
After you submit your application form to the local planning office they will then publicise your application. Consult the relevant bodies and consider any views and comments received.
During this process you may be contacted to discuss possible amendments to overcome any problems or objections.
After the decision has been made you will be informed of the decision in writing. If the planning application is refused you then have the choice of appealing the decision.
For further information on planning permission for farms please contact your local county council.