Caravan and camping licences

Campsite licences

If you want to use your land for camping for more than 28 days in a year, you must have planning permission for a campsite. For more information, contact the planning department.

If your land will be used for camping on more than 42 consecutive days, or more than 60 days in 12 months, you will need a campsite licence as well as planning permission. This falls under Section 269 of the Public Health Act 1936.

You do not need a licence to run a campsite if:

  • You, an organisation you’re a member of, or the people using your site have an exemption certificate
  • Forestry workers, builders, travelling showmen or seasonal workers stay in tents on the site
  • The site is 5 or more acres and there are 3 or fewer tents there for 28 days or less a year
  • Your site is approved by an organisation with a camping exemption certificate

A campsite licence is free and does not have an expiry date. However, if the planning permission expires, the licence will expire at the same time.

Apply for a campsite licence

To apply for a campsite licence, you need to complete the following steps:

  • Read our campsite licence conditions
  • Fill out our online form. You will need to include details of waste disposal and tell us the number of tents proposed to be on the site at any one time
  • Attach a sketch plan of the proposed site. This can be a photograph or a scan

Apply for a campsite licence

Once you have applied, we will usually let you know whether the application is granted or refused within four weeks. If you have not heard from us within four weeks of receiving the application, you can assume the licence is granted unconditionally.

If you would like to use your site for both camping and caravans, you will need a Holiday touring caravan site licence.

Appeal against a decision

We may attach to a licence certain conditions as we feel fit with respect to the use of the site. Conditions include the space to be kept between tents and the securing of sanitary conditions.

To appeal against a condition, email us at

An applicant may appeal to the magistrates court against any conditions in the licence, or if their application is refused.

Offences and penalties

It is an offence for a person to contravene any of the provisions of Section 269 of the Public Health Act 1936, or to fail to comply with any condition attached to a licence.