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outdoorcode
24-01-2006, 16:29
I'm pondering living in a Yurt for a year or so (fed up of living in a surburban semi) and was wondering what the legal status would be with regards to planning permission, council tax etc... I have a spot in mind, though it is by no means certain, so was wonderig if anyone had done anything similar or knew the legal position & pitfalls.

Cheers :)

Andrew

Lurch
24-01-2006, 16:35
Lorks! How's the missus liking that idea?
Or is she not included in the plan!
:D

outdoorcode
24-01-2006, 16:40
She thinks its a great idea, very outdoorsy my little lady :D , bear in mind we spend most weekends camping, in fact this weekend was the first weekend I have slept in my own bed for about 2 1/2 months :)

scruff
24-01-2006, 16:50
your not gonna start drinkin fermented yak's milk are you?

:yuck:

Lurch
24-01-2006, 16:52
She thinks its a great idea, very outdoorsy my little lady :D

Lucky bugger, mine's a right townie.

Ogri the trog
24-01-2006, 16:52
Andrew,
I'm guessing that you are not tied to a particular address. There might be some issues over a permanent residence, but if you can convince whatever council that it is a temporary structure you might be OK. I'm also guessing that if a welfare agency gets to hear of your ideas, they'll want to beat the drum about water and waste services.
It sounds like a great idea though if you can get the ground.
Keep us informed, as I recon a lot of folk here would be interested in your findings.

Ogri the trog

outdoorcode
24-01-2006, 16:52
Thats wasn't on my list of benefits of living in one :D

Tony
24-01-2006, 17:10
I'd just call the council and ask them what the rules are for that sort of thing. I'd imagine that it would get more complicated if it's not on your land etc

Just ask them for info, you don't need to give them loads of info about yourself.

Celt_Ginger
24-01-2006, 19:22
Hi. Tell the Council that it's a social experiment, and invite some school kids out to have a look see now and again. You never know, you might even get a grant!

anthonyyy
25-01-2006, 10:14
I would guess that legally you would be on very shaky ground. What you propose would probably constitute a “change of use” and would require planning permission.
There have been cases of Travellers buying caravan parks, which already have planning permission ( for use by holiday makers), being told by the council that it constitutes a “change of use” when they move in permanently. Living in a structure for a year as you propose would probably count as “permanent”.

If you want to get a cast-iron gurantee that what you are doing is legal then you will have to spend a fortune in legal fees and years of your time.


The best thing about a yurt is that it is easy to take down if you do run into problems. What the authorities do not see will not hurt them.

pumbaa
25-01-2006, 10:19
Not to steal the Ditch Monkeys idea , but if you did it to raise money for charity , they would have a hard time turning you down ! If they do , the media will kick their butts for you .
Just an idea . I read the now locked thread on BB and this might help you through some legal issues .
Good luck
Pumbaa

Fluxus
25-01-2006, 10:22
Andrew,
From cases I know of - it is likely to be a battle - IIRC you can live on a piece of land - in a temporary structure for 28 days in one year without permission. after that you may need to apply for a change of use / temporary planning permission.
Several people have done it but you may need to prove that it is necessary to your livelyhood to be resident there eg - caring for livestock , charcoal burning etc.

If you are serious about taking on the planning system you should read this book:
Low impact development by Simon Fairlie (http://www.amazon.co.uk/exec/obidos/ASIN/1897766254/qid=1138184049/sr=8-1/ref=sr_8_xs_ap_i1_xgl/026-5179363-3823608)
More info about the book and other low impact settlements can be found here :http://www.tlio.demon.co.uk/tinkers.htm

There is a real case for a change in the planning system to recognise low impact settlements as separate from conventional housing development - It takes folks to take on the council and Govt head on to help that change happen.

All the best of luck
Flux

outdoorcode
25-01-2006, 10:43
Thanks for the advice so far, the spot I'm thinking of is actaully on a farm, not far from a farmhouse in a hidden spot where you would have to look pretty hard to see it, my lavvu has been up for about 5 weeks there now :) If I did take the plunge I wouldn't want to involve the farm in any legal problems so it would have to be legit

Fluxus
25-01-2006, 10:49
If its in a hidden spot and ok with the landlord - I reckon the only way you are going to be able to do it is to just move on and say nothing. If anyone complains to the council, just be in a position to move off straight away before it gets to a conflict situation. If you approach the council first I'd be amazed if they said anything but NO WAY - once they know about the plan - you've burnt your bridges. Sadly its pretty much illegal to be a peasant in this country nowadays.
All the best
Flux

Kane
25-01-2006, 10:52
Don't forget the guy that built a shelter in a wood on the quiet and was caught during an aerial survey - large camo net may be called for - probably worth going the social experiment route, if they say no then you pays your money and takes your chances :)

Kane

outdoorcode
25-01-2006, 10:55
If its in a hidden spot and ok with the landlord - I reckon the only way you are going to be able to do it is to just move on and say nothing. If anyone complains to the council, just be in a position to move off straight away before it gets to a conflict situation. If you approach the council first I'd be amazed if they said anything but NO WAY - once they know about the plan - you've burnt your bridges. Sadly its pretty much illegal to be a peasant in this country nowadays.
All the best
Flux

But if I did move on and was ordered off by the council, I would then be homeless (I was going to give up my rented house), and I wasn't planning on becoming a "traveller" :o

Fluxus
25-01-2006, 11:21
I can see the dilemma. If you even ask about living in a yurt though, you'll probably been seen by the authorities as a 'traveller' and be lumbered with all the prejudice that goes with that label.

Peasantry rarely came with much security!

The folks that had their solar panels spotted from the air were inside a national park which made the planning position even more conservative. There isn't much fun in being constantly worried that you are going to be evicted - but that will probably only happen if you aggravate some neighbours - there are plenty of folks living in the woods in yurts or benders - very few have permission. They just keep their heads down and cultivate good relations with those around them.
maybe talk to someone at Steward Wood as they have much experience of this stuff :
http://www.stewardwood.org/woodland/

I'll leave you in peace now!
Flux

leon-1
25-01-2006, 11:25
Andrew we can surmise all we want, it will not help you get the information you require, you really need to speak to someone who lives in a yurt in this country or someone who works for the council that is likely to know the ins, outs and technicalities.

It may be worth searching the net to find out if there are any little web communities that are concerned with living in a yurt in the UK, it may seem unlikely, but its is still possible.

Abbe Osram
25-01-2006, 11:54
But if I did move on and was ordered off by the council, I would then be homeless (I was going to give up my rented house), and I wasn't planning on becoming a "traveller" :o

Hi mate,
I dont know the laws of your nation but I know that in germany or here in sweden you can lease very cheap a chunk of land. If you lease your land you are pretty free to do as you please and its cheap compare to renting a house.
Probably the only laws you have to watch are the common laws applied to campers. If I would be you, I would lease some spot and start living there and see what happend. If you ask to many stupid question you will get a lot of stupid answeres.

I did this here. They are very restricted to give you the right to build a cabin near ot the shoreline of a lake. Even if a lot of rich guys got it done somehow do they give us poor fellows a hard time. So I said to them ok, than I am not building a cabin but live in a tipee instead, do you have laws on that too? He said if I have a permanent camp with a tipee longer than a week I will have to have to ask for permission similar to the building permission. I said that is nuts as I dont want to pay for a blueprint sketch of the tipee, like you would have to do for a cabin design, etc etc. I said to him that I am going to move around on my own plot than, staying less than a week on one spot and move the tipee some hundered meters around. The guys face changed red and he got very angry shouting at me that this is forbidden and I only want to bypass the law.

When I told my good old neigbour about the meeting he simply said:

"Dont ask stupid questions" nobody bothers if you dont push their nose into the subject.

cheers
Abbe

anthonyyy
25-01-2006, 12:19
There you have it: move to Sweden for a year. Probably not as big a culture shock as living in a yurt in England.

Graham_S
25-01-2006, 12:26
it's easier to get forgiveness than permission.

Wayne
25-01-2006, 13:01
DG lives in a yurt at Braziers. See the spring moot pics.


Yurts need plenty of air flow. Felt is not best suited for damp still air in woodland.

mark a.
25-01-2006, 13:04
The big question is, though - can you get an internet connection to a Yurt?

tomtom
25-01-2006, 13:11
Yurts need plenty of air flow. Felt is not best suited for damp still air in woodland.

same with a teepee but it should be ok if your living in it with a fire going all the time.. otherwise it will start going green and funky round the bottom! :yuck:

outdoorcode
25-01-2006, 13:30
The big question is, though - can you get an internet connection to a Yurt?

Yup I could, I can share the farmhouses connection for broadband, electricity from a farm building, water from the private bore hole so I would have most things I need... perhaps working from home would be an idea :D

Roving Rich
25-01-2006, 13:56
A farm has a number of loopholes that you can use.
If you can class yourself as "agricultural workforce" then you will get away with alot.
If you have the landowners permission, then i say go for it. live as low key as you can. Which might mean parking your car elsewhere and walking in. But draws alot less attention. In my experience the landowners permission is tha hardest bit.
The cogs at the council turn very slowly, so if you do get reported (which is how they generally find out, - some dissgruntled dog walker...) then it will take them a while to do anything about it, and I believe they are obliged to rehouse you, or find you somewhere else to pitch. Generally they will turn a blind eye unless someone has cause to complain. Then you have the right to appeal which strings things out a bit longer.
Alot of farms seem to have the odd caravan tucked away inhabited by staff that couldn't really afford a flat or room nearby.
Go for it.
Cheers
Rich

Celt_Ginger
25-01-2006, 19:07
Abbe is probably right about a couple of things. First, if you rent the ground (even for a nominal fee) then the person you rent off should not be liable if you put up your Yurt. Secondly, if you think it may be an issue, don't tell anyone. it's a bit like the laws of access in Ireland. If you just go and walk anywhere you like in Ireland, generally, no-one will say a word to you unless you break something. But, if you ask permission, you will almost certainly be told "No", as the land owner then becomes liable if you injure yourself, as he gave permission. I would seriously think about the social experiment route. There are numerous examples of people going and living in, for example, an Iron age Round House for a year. Simply make a video diary of your daily routine, and keep notes. Go speak to someone at your local University and tell them what you propose (Don't tell them your location yet though) and see what they say.

weekend_warrior
25-01-2006, 19:19
I think you might find this useful. I wish you the very best - I'm jealous! ;)

DIY Planning page (http://www.tlio.org.uk/chapter7/diy.html)

bushtuckerman
25-01-2006, 22:16
Don't forget the guy that built a shelter in a wood on the quiet and was caught during an aerial survey

where was this? i heard of a small house built near a wood in west wales that was spotted by a plane.

morch
25-01-2006, 22:29
Thats a great link Weekend_Warrior, cheers mate, very interesting

gaz_miggy
26-01-2006, 00:57
i have a freind who lives in another freinds by yard in a yut(is a big garden), and just pays him ground rent.

Tony
26-01-2006, 07:31
Andrew, it would be good if you keep us abreast of your findings, it will make a great blogg like thread, very useful for other people.

I hope you manage to sort it all out mate, I've seen a few yurts and they would be great to live in, well, as long as they were big enough, or you had a two yurt system like Dave...Bedroom and living area.

Good luck with it ;)

outdoorcode
26-01-2006, 10:16
I will keep you updated if anything comes of it, its something we have been thinking of for a while, but it may come down tohow practical it will be with regards to land.

On another note I have just recieved a package addressed to Andrew (the Yurt Man), outdoorcode etc, which got me a little excited obviously as its not often I'm called the Yurt Man, and upon opening found a brilliant book called shelter all about various types of shelters from yurts to cave dwellings to cabins ... but I didn't have the foggiest who sent it , till I noticed
from mozzy on the back of the packaging in little letters....

So a huge thanks to Lord Farquhar, I'm honestly touched that someone went out of their way to do something for me

You sir, are a star ! I'm going to be knackered tomorrow as guess what I'm reading in bed tonight !

Andrew

Rebel
26-01-2006, 22:11
sident there eg - caring for livestock , charcoal burning etc.

If you are serious about taking on the planning system you should read this book:
Low impact development by Simon Fairlie (http://www.amazon.co.uk/exec/obidos/ASIN/1897766254/qid=1138184049/sr=8-1/ref=sr_8_xs_ap_i1_xgl/026-5179363-3823608)
More info about the book and other low impact settlements can be found here :http://www.tlio.demon.co.uk/tinkers.htm

Flux

Interesting that you should provide a link to Tinker's Bubble. I visited them several times and my son lived with them for a few months for his school "work experience".

They had constant hassle from the authorities and local residents. They were all drawing benefits which didn't endear them to the locals either (I'm not going to judge them harshly for that myself).

They had bought the land and lived in "benders". Everything on the site was technically non-permanent and they used the woods that they owned to build their dwellings.

Even so they didn't have permission to live there and there was quite a few of them. It took a few years I think but eventually they were evicted. I don't know if they managed to move back in as I no longer live in the area. Judging by the date in the book of 1997 I’d say that they did move back in because I think it was 1995 when I met them. If they got back on their land then I'm delighted for them.

My wife met one couple who'd lived there later on by chance in the street and they'd moved into a council house in a small Somerset town.

It's a shame they got kicked out as it was a lifestyle that I was interested in. They weren't exactly my type of people and I disagreed with some of their policies and beliefs but they didn't rob people, hold illegal raves or bother the local community in a negative way. Their camp site was also reasonably well maintained.

It seems that whenever somebody tries to live an alternative lifestyle on our crowded island that the conventional 9 to 5ers will try and stop them.

swyn
26-01-2006, 22:12
Hello outdoorcode. I'm really pleased to read that you are thinking of trying to live in your yurt. First of all good luck!
Twenty years ago or so a friend and I pitched a tipi in various spots around this country. We were treated with great caution as this was the time of Mrs 'T' and much pressure was on country communitys with the 'traveller'. I'm sure that we were linked with that. I visited Tally valley in wales and was made very welcome although I did not stay there very long. I was quite surprised at how little the people living there had in the way of what I considered every day items, this made me feel quite decadent! I still have a pitch in Wales in a pretty little valley with a stream running through and an old salmon trap. Although my home was shot right through there with a .22 rifle (luckily I was not in as the time!) The canvas still bears the bullet hole.
Closer to home and I have been visited by all sorts of people who stop and want to ask questions. locals were quite anxious to start with as you can imagine.
At one time there were four pitches here of which one now lives in a yurt in The Borders with her family. She has been there for more than five years quietly without any problems. My wife and I are interested in how she will get on with educating her children from home. I think, although I do not know her personally,Toddy would have much in common as their interests seem to follow a similar road. Felt,weaving,living off the land etc.
I now live in a small brick house with a large family. Over the years the tipi has been used as a spare room a holiday cottage and two friends once spent their entire honeymoon in it. At 20, sadly it is getting a little thin and no longer stays up all year.
There you are Outdoorcode, a potted history of my wanderings! I really hope that you find a good pitch. They are certainly out there. All the very best from Swyn.
ps. my friend of 20 years ago now lives part time in NZ and part time in a wood at the bottom of my garden. S

lollywilli
26-07-2011, 18:49
Hi im Lorraine and also wish to live in a yurt with my husband, i need to save till march 2012 to buy one, but im on my way, ive found a local farmer who is going to rent me some land, and enough to grow some spuds !, for my tourer for now. In a year or two i would like to live in a yurt in a wood in or near south shropshire, staying close to young adult daughter, ive read through the posts and found it really usefull, i was wondering how those who have chosen to live in a yurt have found the experience, many thanks

Lorraine;)

lollywilli
27-07-2011, 20:55
Thankyou had some wonderfull advice, and i have contacted a group near where i am thanks again x