Outdoor marquees to be made permanent

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Outdoor marquees
Camden Stables Market (Photo: iStock)

The government said it will make changes to planning rules, allowing for permanent outdoor marquees and markets.

The changes to permitted development rights will mean local businesses in England no longer need planning permission to put up marquees on their land, and councils to hold an outdoor market.

Originally introduced temporarily during the pandemic, the government said the measures will draw more people to high streets and town centres and boost local businesses.

“The changes we introduced last year supported our town centres and high streets during national restrictions, making sure businesses could stay open and helping to instil a sense of community in our local areas,” Housing Minister Christopher Pincher said.

“Making these measures permanent will help business and communities to build back better from the pandemic and are just one part of our vision to transform towns and cities across England into thriving places to work, visit and live.”

Shops will now be able to install gazebos on their own land without planning permission, helping them to better make use of their outside space all year round.

“[The} announcement is a positive, sensible deregulatory measure. It permanently removes barriers for small businesses to do things that we all love in our local areas, and so small firms will be pleased to see this,” Craig Beaumont, chief of external affairs at the Federation of Small Businesses, commented.

“As we look to keep going through the Omicron wave, this will be something that supports the Spring economic recovery, giving a boost to firms on the high street, in retail, in pubs and restaurants, in markets, in small-scale events and in the weddings industry that have all been affected so deeply by Covid.”

Historic visitor attractions and businesses operating in listed buildings could install a gazebo for 120 days in a 12-month period, in order to minimize the impacts to heritage sites.