A Challenge to our sites in our area

Please read the information below and send in your views to the consultation using the link or by email to policy@newforestnpa.gov.uk

Views sought on new planning rules for pop-up campsites to help protect the New Forest

PUBLISHED ON: 24 SEPTEMBER 2021  Here on the New Forest National Park Website

A consultation on proposed new planning rules to regulate both new and larger temporary campsites has been launched.

The New Forest National Park has seen an increase in pop-up campsites in recent years and the National Park Authority is proposing that all temporary campsites over 50 pitches as well as all new temporary sites established since 1 March 2020 should be required to apply for planning permission to help protect the environment.

The New Forest National Park has more than three times the number of camping and touring caravan bed spaces per square kilometre than the average of all other English national parks. There are currently 12 known temporary campsites operating, with pitch numbers ranging from 12 to 90.

Under national permitted development rights, temporary campsites can currently legally operate for 56 days a year without express planning permission and the NPA is proposing introducing an ‘Article 4 Direction’ in the National Park which would require a planning application for all new and the larger existing sites. Article 4 Directions can be used by local planning authorities to protect the amenity of an area and the National Park Authority believes the use of the Direction within the protected landscape of the National Park is justified. 

Planning Committee Chairman Gordon Bailey said: ‘The New Forest is already one of the most visited National Parks in England and has the highest proportion of land designated as internationally important for nature conservation in the country, so it is vital we protect the very thing that people come here to enjoy.

‘These new rules will not affect smaller temporary campsites which have been operating for a number of years. However, we are concerned about the impact of larger sites and any new sites, and it is proposed that these should require planning permission in the future.’

The NPA said that even before the pandemic, it appears that the trend for more ‘permitted’ camping and caravan sites is likely to continue into the future.

The consultation on the Article 4 Direction runs from 27 September to 7 November, and comments received will be taken into account in deciding whether to confirm the Direction.

The Direction and accompanying plan can be seen on the NPA website or at the NPA offices: New Forest National Park Authority, Town Hall, Avenue Road, Lymington, Hampshire, SO41 9ZG. 

Consultation responses can be sent to the Policy Manager at the above address or by email to policy@newforestnpa.gov.uk, quoting ‘Article 4 Direction – temporary campsites’.

If the Direction is confirmed it will come into effect on 30 September 2022. Before then, the NPA will produce updated guidance and policies to help inform future planning applications for new and larger campsites. 


5 Replies to “A Challenge to our sites in our area”

  1. I would ask that consideration be given with regard to organised rallies by professionaly managed organisations be excluded from any such restrictions. These rallies are overseen by dedicated people and usually attended by caring participants. Any deviation from rules laid down by the clubs at these rallies are addressed and dealt with in an appropriate manner.

    1. I hope you sent this excellent response to the council too on the email address supplied? Thankyou for reading and commenting on this important issue

  2. People camping with The Camping and Caravan Club are responsible campers who have their own facilties and do not contaminate the ground they camp on with any rubbish. The Stewards who manage the sites ensure this happens within the guidelines set by The Camping and Caravan Club Headquaters and anyone flouting the rules is asked to leave site.
    The Club has used sites at Breamore House, Bamptons Farm, Leylands and others very succesfully over many years bringing enjoyment to families who camp there without any conflict with local residents, on the contrary, they add revenue to the landowners and this helps their other businesses continue to be bouyant and ensuring during lean years they are still able to employ people on their Farms and Estates. In addition, local businesses also gain from the campers who have to buy their necessities such as Milk and Bread and if staying for a holiday their weekly shopping as well. Many campers, irrespective of their length of stay, also enjoy taking in the local eating establishments either for lunch or and evening meal and this keeps hard pressed local venues open.
    Whilst I can understand that the local Council may be concerned regarding Pop-Up sites which are not managed by large organisations and Clubs, the sites used by The Camping and Caravan Club must not be thought of in the same vain as they are well established and managed locally to protect the environment, the income generated also supports the local environment from the site fees paid to the landowners enabling them to manage the land for the future.
    All of our landowners protect the land because they want us to come back next year and the year after, if they do not do so the whole system would die a natural death.

    1. I hope you sent this excellent response to the council too on the email address supplied? Thankyou for reading and commenting on this important issue

  3. We are responsible campers and have been so for many years. If the sites are withdrawn, not only will the land owner loose income from rallies not going ahead, but also any local businesses in the area who rely on extra income when a rally is on, will also loose out financially. Many campers often visit the area where they are camping in and that in itself brings revenue to them.

    Sites which just pop up for the season and have no facilities for getting ride of grey water are the ones who should be shut down. Our sites have strict rules on how we can dispose of our used water correctly. We also always take our rubbish away from any rally so as to leave the campsite exactly how we found it.

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