Allotment Gardening Advice Help Chat

Poultry and Pets => The Hen House => Topic started by: gsc on May 08, 2010, 08:14

Title: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: gsc on May 08, 2010, 08:14
Following on from my post about planning permission on 2 acres, I'm wondering at what point we would/could be considered a smallholding.

I was thinking of getting some hens until the potential planning problems cropped up about everything else.

I abandoned the idea but now I'm wondering whether I should go ahead and just maybe getting registered as a smallholding might help.

I'm told being even a registered smallholding has no legal definition as regards planning consent but it certainly makes the planner go 'mmmm not sure about that' whenever I mention it.
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: Nails on May 08, 2010, 09:15
I think you need a CHP number, that would make you a smallholding, as for the legal side for planning etc i would have no idea!
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: gsc on May 08, 2010, 09:19
I think you need a CHP number, that would make you a smallholding

Is it as simple as that?  I just register?  or do I have to meet certain criteria as regards livestock?
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: sunshineband on May 08, 2010, 09:27
No I don't think there are criteria for a range of livestock before you can be considered a small holding, otherwise you could never be a vegan smallholder  :lol: :lol:
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: Nails on May 08, 2010, 09:31
No just ring Defra and ask for a number, you need this number before you get live stock.
Just because you have a number doesn't mean you need live stock its there if at any time you do, and by live stock i meean the 4 legged variety, not the 2 lol you have to register with Defra if you have over 50 birds, but not if you only have a handful.
Defra's number is on the web site. www.defra.gov.uk i think:)
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: gsc on May 08, 2010, 09:32
Vegan smallerholder?  Now there's a thought ::)  Wonder what the council would have to say about that.

Anyone got any ideas about applying online to register or where to download the forms?

Edit:  Thanks Nails (our posts crossed)
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: sunshineband on May 08, 2010, 09:36
I know you have to register wuth DEFRA and the forms are quite long  ;)

You could try some time with Google and see what you come up with. Or check the DEFRA website
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: Nails on May 08, 2010, 09:41
Just ring Defra mon-fri no forms to fill out, just personal details, name address etc, they sometimes give you the number over the phone, they will ask waht you are intending to keep, just say Sheep, if you want different things you just ring them and let them know.
they will send you books etc for moving animals etc just store them away. Only done this a few weeks ago for my daughter when she got a couple of sheep for her back yead!!!! She is now classed as a small holding.
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: gsc on May 08, 2010, 09:56
Thanks Nails - was struggling to find anything online
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: Nails on May 08, 2010, 10:00
No problems glad i was able to help.
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: joyfull on May 08, 2010, 10:03
I think your plot has to be at least 1/2 acre to be classed as a small holding so you are well over that  :)
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: Nails on May 08, 2010, 10:30
No it doesn't Joyfull, my daughter just rung up and they gave her a number, she has no where near 1/2 acre, they just gave her the number over the phone!
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: joyfull on May 08, 2010, 10:33
oh must have changed then  :)
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: gsc on May 08, 2010, 10:34
No it doesn't Joyfull, my daughter just rung up and they gave her a number, she has no where near 1/2 acre, they just gave her the number over the phone!
That's interesting although I wonder if it will hold much sway with the planners if anyone can get a number.

What does your daughter have Nails, and what will she do with it?
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: GrannieAnnie on May 08, 2010, 14:12
We are a smallholding on half an acre.  Although you have to register with DEFRa if you have over 50 chickens, you can still register with less than that.

When we first moved here we had 2 goats, so Brian called DEFRA, but we were already a smallholding at our previous house with only a fifth of an acre!  They gave us a Holding or CPH number, then for the goats we have a herd number and for the chickens we have a flock number.  But now we only have the chickens! Then we just let them know if our numbers go over a certain amount.

It's very easily done and doesn't take long!

Good luck with your 2 acres!  Don't let them grind you down.  We HATE planning officers and councils!!!!  They are a pain in the butt.
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: gsc on May 08, 2010, 14:21
Thanks Grannie Annie.  It does kind of get to you after a bit. :(
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: cornishgirl on May 08, 2010, 19:24
A small holding I beleive is anything under 40 acres - I am just off now to find your previous posting which looks intriguing......  ;)
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: sunshineband on May 08, 2010, 20:49
Glad you have lots of helpful answers here -- best of luck  :D :D
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: GrannieAnnie on May 08, 2010, 22:27
I just found this, looks interesting!

http://www.rural-smallholdings.co.uk/running-smallholding/setting-up-a-smallholding/
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: gsc on May 09, 2010, 05:22
mmmm - interesting article but I guess I am hearing that it won't help me much in that it
"confers no rights onto its holder and is purely for administration purposes".

I guess planning could say "so you have a smallholding number - so what?".

For those of you who have been following my other thread on the subject of planning permission, I am going to leave it to a planning consultant now and let them deal with the council.

Thanks for all your input everyone.
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: rustynail on May 10, 2010, 09:33
Hello all

Ive been lurking here for a while, finding lots of useful advice and information, as I have just become a trainee 'Jeeves' to 4 chickens.  :dry:

I havent asked any questions yet because every question I have had has been answered on the forum already!

I now have two questions, just out of interest - why register with DEFRA if you have less than 50 hens, and what is the advantage of being registered as a smallholder? I just wonder why invite bureaucracy into your life if you dont have to? Im genuinely wondering what the advantages are - if there are any?
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: gsc on May 10, 2010, 09:36
For me I am hoping it will make it harder for the council to refuse if planning permission becomes an issue.
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: woodburner on May 10, 2010, 10:13
Are you having trouble with borough or parish?
Having 'seen through' various 'inadequacies' I have some pretty good notions on how to get round them. For starters though, don't be like the lady who wanted to be sure she could legally keep chickens in her garen, and asked all the wrong people.

Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: gsc on May 10, 2010, 10:23
It's the County Councils planning officers.

I got registered as a small holding today. ::) :D
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: joyfull on May 10, 2010, 10:27
Hello all

Ive been lurking here for a while, finding lots of useful advice and information, as I have just become a trainee 'Jeeves' to 4 chickens.  :dry:

I havent asked any questions yet because every question I have had has been answered on the forum already!

I now have two questions, just out of interest - why register with DEFRA if you have less than 50 hens, and what is the advantage of being registered as a smallholder? I just wonder why invite bureaucracy into your life if you dont have to? Im genuinely wondering what the advantages are - if there are any?

/quote]

I have 30+ including chicks and cockerels and I registered with Defra so that in the event of an outbreak of any infectious diseases in my area I would be notified. I think this is quite important as my birds all free range.
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: rustynail on May 10, 2010, 10:41
Quote
I have 30+ including chicks and cockerels and I registered with Defra so that in the event of an outbreak of any infectious diseases in my area I would be notified. I think this is quite important as my birds all free range.

Ah I see, thanks, Joyfull. I have 4 hens that free range in my back garden when I am at home. Would you still advise registering with DEFRA?
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: joyfull on May 10, 2010, 10:55
It can't do any harm and as chicken keeping is addictive you may find that you will soon get more hens  :lol:
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: gem on May 10, 2010, 22:09
Hello,

Been reading this post and just thought I would add that getting a CPH is mainly used for keeping livestock or poultry over 50.  The number is used for animal movements etc so if you get a CPH this is what its for, if you get one and dont use it you will eventually get taken off the system as they maintain thier records for business use.  You can get a CPH from the Rural ayments Agency and flock numbers for numbers over 50 from Animal Health (both part of Defra).

The main reason you would let Animal Health (Defra) know you have chickens even under 50 is for peroids of notifiable disease. It will mean you can be informed quicker of the situation and whats required from you as a keeper.  They will find you eventually in an outbreak if you are located in the area where the disease is anyway it will just take them a bit longer so its personal choice if you keep less than 50 birds.

Hope that helps
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: gsc on May 13, 2010, 05:12
Re. the keeping of less than 50 chickens, wouldn't it also depend on if and what you had in the way of other livestock?  eg the odd pig/goat/sheep.
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: Sassy on May 13, 2010, 09:03
For the odd pig, sheep or goat you need to be registered as a smallholding and comply with movement regulations just as a farmer would.

I'm sorry but I have been away and have not read your planning thread. However, closely following 2 lots of planning applications in our village, I can say that the planners including the Planning Inspectorate, will not be swayed by a few animals. They have 'got wise' to people buying in a few cows or whatever in an effort to obtain planning. Both of these were on 11.5 acre and 9 acre plots of land.

As the planning policies are mainly advisory it does depend on what interpretation is put on them by local planners and this can vary greatly from one authority to another. In our area it is the Borough Council that would deal with this sort of planning not the County Council.

As an ex Parish anbd Town Clerk I can confirm that lots of people think they know about planning but you are very wise to go with a Planning Consultant as they will know what they are talking about and be up to date with current policies, which will vary from area to area. A Parish or Town Council cannot stop your planning application - they offer an opinion to the Borough/District Council which should be based on planning regs and not just 'not in my back yard', which the Borough/District Council will take into consideration when making a decision.
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: gsc on May 13, 2010, 09:08
Sassy - Are you talking of people trying to get permission to build or just to be rated as agricultural?

Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: gsc on May 14, 2010, 07:53
Just a quick update - more in my other post.

Had notification of a planning investigation yesterday and the enforcement officer came to see me same day.

One of the things she said was that a small holding number doesn't mean a thing and neither does keeping chickens.  If that's all you have then it's domestic and planning permission is required.

So I guess it rather depends on whether one's miserable neighbours see fit to complain  ::)  Of course there is no problem as long as they are in your garden, but on agricultural land it's a problem.

However because we are doing other things the situation is somewhat easier. 
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: Sassy on May 14, 2010, 08:16
Sassy - Are you talking of people trying to get permission to build or just to be rated as agricultural?



Trying to get permission to build
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: Sassy on May 14, 2010, 08:17
[quote author=gsc link=topic=56267.msg668326#msg668326 date=127382000

So I guess it rather depends on whether one's miserable neighbours see fit to complain  ::)  Of course there is no problem as long as they are in your garden, but on agricultural land it's a problem.
 
[/quote]

Even if your neighbours object it still needs to be on planning grounds. :)
Title: Re: What constitutes a smallholding - are hens enough?
Post by: gsc on May 14, 2010, 08:22
Even if your neighbours object it still needs to be on planning grounds. :)

I know but what I guess happens a lot is people quite happily raise a few chickens and produce without realising that if some-one were to complain, there could be a problem.

Were it not for this one neighbour hating our dogs, I daresay no-one would have bothered about us having a few hens and growing some veg.  We, and the neighbours, would have quite happily thought that it was fine since it was 'agriculture'.