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National Park-wide Article 4 Direction – temporary campsites

Our adopted Local Plan (2019) confirms that consideration would be given to the use of an Article 4 Direction to ensure temporary campsites are properly planned. An Article 4 Direction means that a particular specified development cannot be carried out under permitted development and therefore needs a planning application. This gives the planning authority the opportunity to consider a proposal in more detail.

In March 2021 the Authority resolved to make a non-immediate, National Park-wide Article 4 Direction to remove permitted development rights for larger and all new temporary campsites, supported by new guidance against which future applications would be assessed. This was in response to concerns expressed regarding the number of temporary campsites operating in the National Park; their impact on local communities; and impacts on the wider landscape and habitats of the New Forest.

A non-immediate Article 4 Direction was subsequently published in September 2021 and subject to a six-week period of consultation. The majority of the representations received during the consultation period supported the use of the Article 4 Direction as a legitimate planning tool to help protect the National Park and ensure development is properly planned. The Department for Levelling Up, Housing & Communities confirmed they were content for the Authority to decide whether to confirm the Article 4 Direction or not and did not intend to intervene.

In March 2022 the Authority agreed to bring the Article 4 Direction into effect on 30 September 2022. The confirmed Article 4 Direction helps to protect the environment of the New Forest National Park and means that planning permission is required for:

  • All new temporary sites established since 1 March 2020 (irrespective of their size); and
  • All existing temporary campsites established prior to 1 March 2020 with more than 50 pitches.

We have produced accompanying guidance to help inform future planning applications for new and larger campsites. This guidance is consistent with (and supports) the relevant policies in the adopted New Forest National Park Local Plan 2016 – 2036.  This guidance, as well as the formal notice and the confirmed Article 4 Direction is available to view and download via the buttons below.

Chair of the National Park Authority


'Our planning policies have been developed to ensure our duties to conserve and enhance the National Park are incorporated in all planning decisions.'

More New Forest Planning policy

Planning policy is a key statutory function and plays a central role in the achievement of the two National Park purposes and the related socio-economic duty.

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