When we consider planning for a commercial equestrian business we are generally referring to livery yards, riding schools and racing stables. Everyone's requirements for their yard will be different, from a few stables and schooling area to a sprawling competition venue with every equestrian facility you can imagine.

Where commercial yards are to be developed, and where there are economic benefits that come with related employment, we generally see Councils being supportive of robust planning proposals which are well designed and encourage employment or generate income for the local area.

For more information watch our video here:

Planning permission for large scale equestrian development

Is planning permission required?

Larger scale commercial (for business) equestrian buildings, including stables, gallops, indoor arena's and ancillary accommodation for grooms, for example, will require full planning and justification for any impacts associated with the business.

Many livery yards are set up as a farm diversification opportunity, or by rural property owners who keep horses and have sufficient grazing land and space for stables and paddocks to accommodate other people's horses too. Livery yards (or stables) providing stabling and grazing facilities for owners of horses and ponies may require a change of use planning application.

Our advice would always be to assume that you do need permission and check in advance of doing any works, rather than steaming ahead and then finding out that there’s a problem further down the line.

For more information watch our videos here:

Do I need planning permission to use an equestrian facility for business use?

What are the main factors to consider?

  • Likelihood of flooding
  • Highways safety and impact
  • Landscape and visual impact
  • Impact on public rights of way
  • Impact on designations such as Green Belt or AONBs
  • Noise impact
  • Neighbour amenity
  • Ecology

Other factors to consider include Design, Materials, Scale, Use, Siting and Drainage.

Budget: For larger scale commercial projects we can advise on a case by case basis.

Timescale: You should estimate 6 to 12 months at least.

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