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Caravan Sites

Volume 474: debated on Monday 31 March 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) whether his Department has held a consultation on proposed amendments to the time limit given in paragraph 6 of Schedule 1 to the Caravan Sites and Control of Development Act 1960; (195761)

(2) what organisations have exemption certificates under paragraph 6 of Schedule 1 to the Caravan Sites and Control of Development Act 1960;

(3) what discussions his Department has had with the devolved administrations on proposed changes to Schedule 1 to the Caravan Sites and Control of Development Act 1960;

(4) what representations his Department has received on the proposed changes to the time limit given in paragraph 6 of Schedule 1 to the Caravan Sites and Control of Development Act 1960.

Any proposal for amendments to the time limit given in paragraph 6 of Schedule 1 to the Caravan Sites and Control of Development Act 1960 would require new primary legislation. DEFRA has no plans for any such legislation.

DEFRA and Natural England, who now deal with the issue of exemption certificates under the 1960 Act, are updating, and consolidating into a single document, the existing guidance on applications for exemption certificates for both caravans and camping. We have consulted the devolved administrations and the major camping and caravanning organisations, including the Association of Caravan and Camping Exempted Organisations, about the new document.

The document reiterates previous guidance on the time limit for paragraph 6 exemptions—consisting of a maximum of five periods of 24 hours commencing when the first caravan is stationed on the rally site.

Exempted organisations which, prior to any exempted rally, wish to have a single caravan on the rally site to assist with the setting up of an event may rely on the additional exemption under paragraph 2 of Schedule 1 of the 1960 Act. This provides that a site licence is not required for the use of land by a person travelling with a caravan for not more than two nights. The exemption is subject to the condition that only one caravan is allowed and the total number of days in any twelve month period on which a caravan was stationed anywhere on the site, or any adjoining land in the same ownership, cannot exceed 28 days.

DEFRA and Natural England are considering representations from the major camping and caravan organisations. We expect to finalise the single guidance document by the summer of 2008.

There are over 300 organisations who hold exemption certificates under paragraph 6 of Schedule 1 of the 1960 Act, so it is not practical to list them. A list of the organisations is publicly available on the Natural England website.