Land at Clement Street, Sutton at Hone – Travelling Showpeople encampment – Updated 28th November 2023

The Local Planning Authority (LPA) are aware of the arrival of a number of static and touring caravans as well as fairground equipment and vehicles associated with Travelling Showpeople at land to the south of Clement Street, east of M25 and west of Church Road.  It is understood that this commenced on Friday 10th March 23 and continued over the weekend of 11th-12th March 2023.

In response to this incursion, the LPA visited the site on Monday 13th March 23 and instructed solicitors with a view to placing an Injunction on the land.   The necessary paperwork was submitted to the High Court on Tuesday 14th March 23 and a Court Hearing was granted to take place on 15th March 23.  In the morning of Wednesday 15th March 2023, the Judge ruled in the Council’s favour and granted an interim Injunction Order.  This Injunction Order prevents any FURTHER development from taking place on the land.  A further Hearing took place on Friday 24th March 23 where the Council were successful in securing a continuation of the Injunction until such time as planning application DA/23/00122/COU “Change of use of land for a Showpeople's Family Quarters to form 7 permanent plots for travelling show people with associated equipment storage, equipment washing and testing area, access, amenity, SUDs, landscaping and earth bunds” is determined or, 24 September 2023, whichever is the sooner.  As the planning application had not been determined by 24th September 23, the Hearing was re-listed for Monday 27th November 2023 in anticipation of the planning application having been determined by that date.  The planning application has now been REFUSED on 23rd October 2023. If you wish to view the refused planning application, you can do so via: but it is now too late to comment as the application has been determined.

On 16th November 2023, the Local Planning Authority served an Enforcement Notice on the land, its owners and occupiers.  This requires the use of the land as a Travelling Showpeople’s site to cease and all caravans/mobile homes, fairground equipment, vehicles and associated operational development to be removed from the land.  The Enforcement Notice comes into effect on 15th December 2023 and gives the owners/occupiers nine months to comply with the Notice. The owners/occupiers can appeal against this Notice to the Planning Inspectorate.  If they do so, the nine month period for compliance does not start until such time as a decision is made on the appeal.  The appointed Inspector has the ability to change the time for compliance even if the Enforcement Notice is upheld.  At present, planning appeals are taking a number of months to be considered by the Planning Inspectorate.  As such, if the owners/occupiers do choose to appeal, they will be able to remain on the land for some time and until at least 9 months after the appeal is decided.  The outcome of the appeal could be that the appointed Inspector decides to quash the Enforcement Notice and effectively grant planning permission for the use to remain. Local residents will get an opportunity to comment on any future appeal.

As of 17th November 2023, a new planning application reference: 23/01346/COU has been submitted. This is accompanied by additional supporting information and technical reports which seek to address some of the reasons for refusal.  Residents will therefore have another opportunity to comment on the development. Letters will be sent to all those who were consulted before and all those who commented on the refused planning application.  However, if you do not receive a letter, you can still comment via Public Access:

At the re-listed Hearing for the Injunction on 27th November 23, the judge ruled that the Injunction will remain in place until the aforementioned enforcement notice has been complied with or planning permission is granted for the use of the site as a travelling showpeople's quarters.  If planning permission is not granted and any appeal unsuccessful, the Council will require the unauthorised use to cease and the land cleared.



Many domestic extensions do not require planning permission. You can check whether or not an extension is considered to be permitted development not requiring planning permission. You can check whether there are any planning applications relating to the property you are concerned about.

A breach of planning control takes place when development is undertaken without planning permission.

This can include:

  • Building or engineering works or the material change of use of a property or land;
  • The carrying out of development not in accordance with a planning permission, either by varying from an approved plan or by failing to comply with conditions attached to a permission;
  • The carrying out of works to a listed building without consent;
  • The felling or carrying out of works to a tree which is the subject of a Tree Preservation Order or which is in a Conservation Area;
  • The demolition of a building within a Conservation Area

Except for works to listed buildings, displaying unauthorised advertisements and carrying out works to protected trees, most breaches of planning control are not in themselves, criminal offences.

If planning permission is not required, then the Council are unable to take any action.

The following are typical examples of activities which are NOT normally breaches of planning control and will not therefore be investigated:

  • Boundary/land ownership disputes;
  • On-street parking of commercial vehicles in residential areas;
  • Discussions having taken place about possible building works or conversions, but work has not commenced;
  • Operating a business from home where the residential use remains the primary use and there is minimal adverse impact on the area;
  • Stationing of a touring caravan or motorhome within the curtilage of a house;
  • Clearing land of undergrowth, bushes and trees provided they are not subject to a Tree Preservation Order and are not within a Conservation Area;
  • Road safety matters

If your complaint falls within any of the above categories we will not investigate the complaint.

If you believe that a breach of planning control has occurred, then you must use an Report a Planning Breach Form to report it. Please ensure all information provided is as accurate and as detailed as possible. Failure to provide a completed form is likely to result in the complaint not being investigated. If you have evidence of the alleged breach of planning control please attach this when invited to do so.

If your complaint is to do with works to listed buildings, works to trees that are subject to a Tree Preservation Order or in a Conservation Area, or to do with an existing or ongoing investigation, then you can contact Planning Enforcement on 01322 343434 or by contacting Planning.Enforcement All other types of planning enforcement complaint must be reported using the Report a Planning Breach Form.


Please note that officers will not investigate anonymous complaints.

Dartford Planning Enforcement Plan

The Council has agreed a Planning Enforcement Plan. This gives advice on what a breach of planning control involves, and how an investigation will be conducted, It also sets out the priorities for action with regard to reported breaches.

The Dartford Planning Enforcement Plan will be reviewed annually but updated as necessary. If you have any comments to make on the Dartford Planning Enforcement Plan, please contact Planning Enforcement.

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