The Adopted Brighton & Hove City Plan Part One (March 2016) [PDF, 9MB] lists and safeguards sites for office and high tech uses (Use Classes B1 (a) and B1(b)).

The City Plan Part One contains strategic allocations for new office floorspace, (see policies DA1 to DA6). 

City Plan policies SA2 Central Brighton [PDF,149kb], CP2 Sustainable Economic Development [PDF, 41kb]; CP3 Employment Land [PDF, 54kb] are also relevant.

The Employment Land Study 2012 indicates a forecast demand for office floorspace (Use Class B1(a) and B1(b)) in the city to 2030.

A number of sites have been identified for new offices, new office floorspace as part of mixed use redevelopment, see the strategic allocations in the City Plan Part One.

Change of use from office to residential

From 6 April 2016, the existing temporary permitted development right in Class O to change buildings in office use to dwelling houses was made permanent, with a condition allowing the local planning authority to consider certain noise impacts (See Class O)

The local planning authority has 56 days from receipt of the application to confirm whether further details in relation to these flooding, contamination, highways, noise and transport matters is required, failing which development may proceed.

Where prior approval is required, development shall be carried out in accordance with details approved by the local planning authority.

Listed buildings and scheduled ancient monuments are excluded from this permitted development right.

Associated external physical development may still require planning permission.

A prior approval checklist is available to assist you.

Applicants should be aware that the office to residential permitted development right is not applicable in certain parts of the city. See the 'Article 4 Direction' section below.

Article 4 Direction - office to residential

The temporary permitted development right has been removed in 3 parts of the city through an Article 4 Direction that came into effect 25 July 2014:

  • Central Brighton, New England Quarter and London Road Area
  • Edward Street Quarter, Edward Street, Brighton
  • City Park, The Droveway, Hove

The effect of the Article 4 Direction is that from 25 July 2014, planning permission will be required for change of use from office (Use Class B1(a)) to residential (Use Class C3) in the parts of the city covered by the Article 4 Direction.

Adopted City Plan policy CP3.5 [PDF, 54 kb] is used to assess any applications for change of use in these areas. This policy sets out the criteria that will be used to assess change of use applications and the evidence required to be submitted with planning applications to demonstrate whether the office premise is redundant and unsuitable for modern employment use.

The applications will also be assessed against other relevant Local Plan policies including those that relate to design and amenity, traffic impacts and those that relate to provision of new housing (such as dwelling type and size, affordable housing and provision of private amenity and open space).

Please also refer to the planning application checklist.

Article 4 Direction and map

The Secretary of State directed on 22 July that the Article 4 Direction should be modified direction letter from Secretary of State (432kb, PDF).

The effect of the Secretary of State’s modification is that any office premises which have secured prior approval before 25 July 2014 are excluded from the Article 4 Direction.

The Secretary of State’s modification has been annexed to the original direction wording. Please note that the confirmed Map 1 - Central Brighton, New England Quarter and London Road Area is the ‘as amended’ version (March 2014) not the version stamped ‘superseded’.

Further information

You can read the 12 June 2014 Policy and Resources Committee report confirming the making of the Article 4 direction and the public notice (PDF, 22kb).

The reasons for the Article 4 Direction are set out in more detail in the 11 July Policy and Resources Committee report.

The council monitors the loss of commercial floorspace and the impact of the temporary permitted development right and data is published in the authority monitoring report.

If you have any other questions about the Article 4 Direction, send an email to planningpolicy@brighton-hove.gov.uk.

Unallocated office sites and premises

The council applies a managed approach to the loss of unallocated office sites and premises.

The following policies may apply which set the criteria and the information required to assess whether these sites can be released to alternative uses.

Adopted City Plan Part One (2016)

Adopted Brighton & Hove Local Plan (2005)