Traditional farmsteads and farm buildings make an important contribution to the remarkably varied character of the countryside. They are fundamental to its sense of place and local distinctiveness but most of them have now become redundant for modern agricultural purposes. Although they lack the agricultural income needed to keep them in good repair many nevertheless have the potential to accommodate a variety of economically viable new uses.
Successful adaptive reuse of any farmstead or building depends on understanding its significance, its relationship to the wider landscape setting and its sensitivity to and capacity for change.
The buildings significance can be retained and enhanced through well-informed maintenance and sympathetic development, provided that repairs, design and implementation are carried out to a high standard.
Local planning varies considerably in relation to conversions of traditional buildings. Many local policies pre date the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) and the more recent introduction of permitted development rights so making it important to take a considered approach at an early stage in order to give a scheme a good chance of achieving planning permission