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First-ever bid to make holiday lets subject to planning consent

A council is launching a bid to make the use of a home for a holiday let subject to a mandatory planning application.

Gwynedd council in Wales is the first ever to try this tactic: it is seeking to win Welsh Government consent for it to introduce a so-called Article 4 direction, which means a planning application has to be submitted and agreed to, before a home can be short let or listed for holiday letting.

The Welsh Government last year announced a series of measures to reduce the number of second homes and short-lets: amongst them, planning legislation was amended to allow local planning authorities like Gwynedd to use an Article 4 Direction to control the use of houses as second homes and holiday accommodation.


Councillor Dafydd Meurig says: “[Gwynedd council has] … tirelessly called on the Welsh Government for years to tackle the increase in holiday homes across the county, and the effect that is having on our communities.

“…Our residents are being priced out of the housing market … Indeed, recent research has shown that on average 65.5 per cent of Gwynedd’s population is priced out of the housing market, with the percentage increasing significantly in areas where there are higher numbers of holiday homes.

“There was recognition of the real challenge facing our communities last year as the Welsh Government announced a series of measures in the field of planning, taxation and licensing to try to get better control of the situation. Since then, the Government has amended the planning regulations, introducing three new planning use classes, namely main home, second home and short-term holiday accommodation.”

He continues: “Gwynedd would be the first authority in Wales to introduce the change, and placing an Article 4 Direction to control the use of houses as second homes or short-term holiday accommodation will be unprecedented. We are therefore pleased that the Welsh Government has committed to providing financial support that will enable us to appoint additional planning officers to deal with the extra workload.”

There is likely to be a period of public consultation before the change is implemented.

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  • icon

    I think this has just been declared illegal in Edinburgh by a Scottish court?

    Peter Why Do I Bother

    I expect a quiet funding against this by AirBnB will be carried out. They are becoming one of my favourite companies in defending the rights of property owners. Shame the NRLA don't have the same appetite for their members.


    Hi Peter,

    Did you by any chance here back about the decision of the policy department of the NRLA about circulating that petition?

    You did so well to actually make a stand.

    Peter Why Do I Bother

    Hi Ellie,

    Not heard anything yet, I did get a reminder though that my subscription is up for renewal next month.

    They have two weeks to come back to me or I am cancelling, since they merged, they have become totally obsessed with flogging you different products and services.

    Why do I want 10% at trade point if I cannot get the non paying tenant out of my property?!?!


    Hi Robert.
    Well the numpties in Wales always seem to follow Scotland in this respect.
    We have effectively got a'communist state' after every penny that they can get out of us, to give to the the work shy and benefit scroungers.
    Just wait until the election and Labour get elected in Westminster, then we will all have to look out, because it isn't going to be pretty.

  • icon

    Don’t hold your breath waiting for the NLRA to do anything constructive. Hopeless representation of the PRS through and through. There needs to be ‘earth quake’ at board level or nothing will change.

  • Peter Lewis

    So 65% of the local Welsh population have been priced out of the local Gwynedd housing market.? What the Councillor omits to say is that just over 60% of the Welsh population are in receipt of benefits. Perhaps the single minded individual should complain to the banks for not awarding benefit claimants mortgages?


    Yes Peter, Wales is in a dire state, based mainly on the lunatics that we have running the asylum down at The Bay.
    I have serious reservations regarding the future, as the authorities are doing their level best to attack anything property related.


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