HC Deb 20 July 1994 vol 247 cc318-9W
Mr. Lait

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what is the Government's planning policy in relation to applications for horse-based development in the countryside; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Curry

Development that supports the rural economy and maintains and enhances the countryside is to be encouraged. Planning applications for development which is in accordance with the development plan shall be allowed unless material considerations indicate otherwise.

Within this framework, the Government wish to see a positive approach towards planning applications for horse-based development. Paragraph 2.21 of planning policy guidance note 7 makes it clear that the keeping and riding of horses for recreational purposes or as part of commercially based equestrian activities can help provide new opportunities for employment and land use in the countryside. Annexe F of the same document gives further guidance on development involving horses.