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Article 4 Direction


An Article 4 direction is used by local authorities to withdraw some permitted development rights and can be used to restrict anything covered by the General Permitted Development Order.

The most common use for an Article 4 direction is for the removal of permitted development rights in conservation areas. When an Article 4 direction is in place it often means that extensions and loft conversions cannot be added to the property without the gaining of planning permission first. Sometimes conservation area management plans will include details of an Article 4 direction and details of the restrictions imposed. However, not all conservation area management plans include details of the Article 4 direction, and many conservation areas haven’t got management plans. Therefore prior to commencement of work under permitted development rights checks should be made with the local authority to see if an Article 4 direction has been put in place.

Other examples of restrictions to a house and its grounds in conservation areas include:

  • the installation or alteration of windows and doors

  • alteration to the roof, including changing materials, the insertion of dormer windows or roof lights.

  • the addition of a front entrance porch or to an entrance facing a road or open space

  • the creation of a hard surface for parking vehicles

  • the alteration, removal or erection of a fence, wall, gate, or other means of enclosure

  • the painting of the exterior of any part of a house or a building within the grounds when not previously painted

  • the installation or replacement of a satellite antennae

  • rendering walls not previously rendered

  • the alteration or removal of a chimney to the house or other building within the grounds

  • the painting or repainting of the exterior of the house or building in the grounds.


Another frequent use of an Article 4 direction is to restrict the conversion of single dwellings into house of multiple occupation (HMO).  Local authorities are using the Article 4 direction to prevent large number of HMOs on a street or in one area. This doesn’t mean that conversion to an HMO will not be possible, but it will require planning permission.

When an Article 4 direction is in place Architecture First can provide architectural drawings for your extension and loft conversion and complete the application for planning permission. Please contact us for further information or complete the enquiry form.

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