Buildings: Change of Use

Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities written question – answered at on 28 November 2022.

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Photo of Rachael Maskell Rachael Maskell Labour/Co-operative, York Central

To ask the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, whether she is taking steps to ensure that buildings designed to host offices are not repurposed as short term holiday lets.

Photo of Rachael Maskell Rachael Maskell Labour/Co-operative, York Central

To ask the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, what steps is he taking to ensure that any redevelopment of city centre office space for residential use, is used for (a) accommodation and (b) not Short Term Holiday Lets.

Photo of Lucy Frazer Lucy Frazer Minister of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)

The Government recognises that high levels of short-term holiday lets can have an adverse impact on some areas, including in city centres as well as tourism hotspots such as Cornwall, Devon and the Lake District.

We are working with members across Parliament, including the honourable member for North Devon, to look at policy options within the planning system. The Department for Culture Media and Sport recently consulted on proposals for the introduction of a Tourist Accommodation Registration Scheme and licensing of holiday homes. We are now analysing the responses received, which will further inform the Government's possible next steps.

On the redeployment of city centre offices specifically, permitted development rights support housing supply by allowing change of use to residential use. This route has provided over 82,000 housing units in the last six years. It will be for the local planning authority to then determine whether there has been a material change of use requiring planning permission if the property is sought to be used for short term holiday lets. Where that is the case, they will determine any application for planning permission in line with the local plan.

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