A CHANGE in planning regulations in England could ‘threaten the survival’ of pop-up campsites in Wales and harm the rural economy, according to one owner.

Campsite operator Susan Allen runs the Moss Lane Cottage campsite in Hanmer, close to the English border and Whitchurch.

In July this year, the Westminster Government extended Permitted Development Rights in England from 28 days per to 60 days, giving English landowners and farmers the right to operate campsites for up to 60 days per year without having to apply for extra planning permission.

Yet despite a consultation on the same issue ending in Wales in February 2022, the Welsh Senedd has yet to make an announcement on the regulations, meaning Welsh pop-up campsites are still restricted to 28 days of operations.

It is believed the Welsh Government is unlikely to extend Permitted Development Rights beyond 28 days, leaving some landowners and rural communities in Wales complaining the situation looks bleak.


Susan said: “We still have the same input costs, but English campsites can open for up to 60 days and we’re stuck at 28 so we’re not able to make anywhere near the profit they can.

“Take public liability insurance for example. We pay £560 for public liability insurance which is a big chunk of income from our 28 day allowance. I suspect a lot of pop-ups don’t even bother with it as it is so costly but we like to do things properly.

“It’s exactly the same cost if you open for 60 days but it's much easier to absorb when you have the right to open for more than twice as long as we do.”

In 2022, she opened for 28 days in a row, but with flagging midweek demand, this year she has opted to select specific weekends to ensure bookings are optimised.

But this still puts her at a disadvantage compared to campsites just over the border in England.

She said: “We have 16 pitches, eight with electricity and eight without, but our land makes it difficult to open before mid-May because it is too wet.

“It is very frustrating that the Welsh government doesn’t seem to want to follow suit and extend PDR as in England, as campsites there get five or six more weekends than we do.

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“I’m not saying that if we got 56 or 60 days we would use them all, but to be able to open more weekends across the summer would make a big difference to us financially.”

Dan Yates, founder of Pitchup.com which has undertaken research into the benefits of pop-up pitching, said of all the UK nations, Wales stood to benefit most from an extension to Permitted Development Rights.

He said: “There is no other single change that would have such an immediate and positive impact on the Welsh rural economy. It would make farms, village shops, pubs, restaurants, and other rural businesses more sustainable and communities more prosperous.”