Caravan and camping sites licensing

Residential caravan sites

The following information relates to residential caravan sites and sites where there may be a mixture of permanent residential and temporary holiday pitches.

If you wish to place a caravan(s) on land for residential purposes, then in most cases you'll need to first apply for planning permission. Planning permission for a residential site will be required before an application is made.Information on how to apply for planning permission can be found on our Planning pages.

Once planning permission has been granted you can then apply for a site licence.

If the site already has a licence and the land is transferred, the site licence will also be required to be transferred.

Before issuing a new licence, you will typically receive the proposed licence conditions and be allowed a 14-day time frame for you to comment before a final licence is issued.

Please note: when a licence is transferred, the conditions remain unchanged.

Failure to meet the standards as set out in the licence conditions could result in us serving a Compliance Notice, which is the first step in taking formal action to improve standards to meet the requirements of licence conditions.

Once an application along with the required information is received, the proposed licence holder will be contacted to arrange a site inspection. It may also be necessary for the Fire Service to attend.

Apply online for a Caravan Licence or Amendment

Caravan sites - Fit and proper person

The Mobile Homes (Requirement for Manager of Site to be Fit and Proper Person) (England) Regulations 2020 prohibit the use of land as a residential mobile home site unless the local authority is satisfied that the owner or manager of the site is a fit and proper person to manage the site.

The Council must maintain and make publicly available a register of those assessed as being a 'fit and proper person'.

Fit and Proper Person Public Register for Mobile Home Parks (PDF) [90KB] (opens new window)

Holiday sites and campsites:

Under the Caravan and Control of Development Act 1960, you are not allowed to use land you own as a caravan site, unless you hold a site licence issued by the council.

You are not allowed to use land you own as a campsite for tents or similar structures unless you hold a site licence issued by the council under the Public Health Act 1936.

There are some exemptions where a licence is not required, they are:

  • Sites occupied by exempted organisations such as the Caravan Club.
  • Sites occupied by the local authority (typically gypsy and traveller sites).
  • Sites for temporary and special purposes such as caravan rallies, agricultural and forestry workers, building and engineering sites and travelling salesmen.
  • Sites occupied by moveable dwellings (including tents) may be used up to a maximum of 42 consecutive days and not more than a total of 60 days in any 12-month period.

There will be licence conditions attached that look at things such as spacing, water supply, drainage and fire precautions.

Please note: a licence cannot be issued without corresponding planning permission.

Small holiday sites

A small holiday site is one that has three or fewer caravans on site for a temporary period

Large holiday sites

A large holiday site is one that has more than three caravans on site for a temporary period.

Touring caravan sites

A touring caravan site is one on which you pay to park your touring caravan or motor home for a temporary period.


A campsite is one occupied by tented dwellings for a temporary period.

Last updated: 09/04/2024 12:14:35