Caravans, including mobile homes up to 65x22ft, can be sited in the direct garden of a house without planning permission if they are used by members of the household as additional living space not as independent accommodation.
Two Citations for Explanation
These two citations give a clear, general explanation of the Law. A caravan can be used in a garden for extra living accommodation without the need for planning approval but a caravan used as a separate residence may not.
Communities and Local Government Circular 01/94. Paragraph 29
“A caravan within the curtilage of a dwelling house may have a number of ancillary uses for which planning permission would not be required. For example, it could be used for additional living accommodation, provided that it remained part of the same planning unit as the dwelling house and the unit remained in single family occupation.”
Office of the Deputy Prime Minister’s ‘Planning Guide for Householders’
“Planning permission is needed if you want to divide off part of your house for use as a separate home (for example, a self- contained flat or bed-sit) or use a building or caravan in your garden as a separate residence for someone else.”
A mobile home can be used in a garden without planning but you will need to justify how the use of the caravan supports the use of the house and how it will not become a separate or independent dwelling. For example the people who sleep and wash in the mobile home will use the cooking facilities of the main house. The structure must also be located in the actual garden, not surrounding land.