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Appeal Decision 76 - Certificate of Lawful Development.

This appeal decision summary and assessment has been produced by Planning Jungle Limited.  For more information, please go to

January 2010 - Code a00076


Summary of Case (appeal allowed): 


The property is a two-storey mid-terrace house, with an original two-storey rear projection. The application was for a proposed dormer on the side roof slope of the original two-storey rear projection, and would have involved the raising of the party wall of the latter structure, which is shared with the adjoining property. 


The key issue was whether the works to the party wall would constitute “Development within the curtilage of a dwellinghouse” and fall within the scope of Part 1 of the GPDO. 


The Council argued that to build up the party wall with the adjoining property, by raising the combined thickness of the joint wall to the two properties, would constitute development not falling within the curtilage of the application site, would therefore fail to comply with the heading of Part 1, and would therefore cause the proposals in their entirety to require planning permission. 


The Inspector made reference to another appeal decision (APP/Q5300/X/01/106324, dated 2001), and stated the following: 


“The Inspector quoted extensively from several authorities (Methuen-Campbell v Walters [1979] 1 QB 525, Dyer v Dorset CC [1988] 3 WLR 213, Attorney-Gen ex rel Suttcliffe & others v Calderdale MBC [1983] JPL and McAlpine v Secretary of State for the Environment [1995] JPL B43). In doing so, he concluded that, on the strength of the final case cited in particular, a curtilage comprised three defining characteristics. Firstly, it occupied a small area around a building, secondly it was intimately associated with that building and thirdly it had to be regarded as part of one enclosure with the house. Where party walls are concerned, the Inspector reached the conclusion that two adjoining curtilages can overlap each other, where a party wall shared by two contiguous properties could result in the partial collapse of both if the wall were removed. He could see no reason why, with a party wall such an integral part of two dwellinghouses, their two curtilages could not overlap, because such small areas were involved, and neither can I”. 


“I find that raising of the party wall between [the application site] and [the adjoining property] as a joint building exercise would be part of the development permitted by Part 1 of Schedule 2 to the Town & Country Planning (General Permitted Development) Order 1995 as amended, within the curtilage of the dwellinghouse at [the application site]”. 


Main Conclusions: 


·       The party wall of a property does fall within the “curtilage” of the property. As such, works to a party wall are covered by the phrase “Development within the curtilage of a dwellinghouse”, and therefore would fall within the scope of Part 1 of the GPDO.
[Relevant to: “Development within the curtilage of a dwellinghouse”].


·       For example, where the proposals involve the building up across the full width of a party wall between two properties, this is permitted* by the Classes within Part 1.
(*subject to compliance with the particular Class including all limitations and conditions, of course)

[Relevant to: “Development within the curtilage of a dwellinghouse”].


·       It should be noted that it is possible for the curtilages of two properties to overlap slightly, such that the same party wall is within the curtilage of each of the two properties.
[Relevant to: “Development within the curtilage of a dwellinghouse”].


Links to the “Appeal Decision Notice” and other associated documents (e.g. drawings, etc): 


·       Appeal Decision Notice: 

·       Drawings: 





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