So, who are The Equestrian Planning Consultancy?

We are nearly through January and, having hosted an online event on all things planning, and with events coming up in the next few weeks we thought we would take the opportunity to re-introduce ourselves and the background to The Equestrian Planning Consultancy!  Why use us?!

The Equestrian Planning Consultancy (TEPC) is managed by Eleni (a dual qualified Chartered Surveyor and Valuer and Chartered Town Planner) and Lisa (a BHSAI and showing judge with a BA (hons) first class in Equine Studies).  We have combined our extensive equestrian knowledge and understanding, and personal experience with our own horses, with property qualifications to help horse owners, business owners and landowners navigate obtaining the relevant planning permissions for all their equestrian needs.  We are supported, full time, by Annette Francis who is a day-to-day point of contact for clients for administration and general support.

A trading arm of award-winning Eldnar Consultancy, the TEPC specifically assists equestrian people to obtain permissions for anything from changes of use to accesses and stabling, arenas, gallops and all-weather turnouts as well as looking at existing sites, varying permissions and supporting potential enforcement enquiries with an appropriate and calm plan of action. We also offer a standalone development appraisal service which has been popular with potential purchasers of sites – allowing us to work out if the site is suitable and what they may achieve, prior to committing to a sale (which has saved some people from making very expensive mistakes!).  This has also been used extensively by existing site owners wishing to understand their options before committing to the expense of preparing a full planning application.  We give people the appropriate information to be able to make informed, and risk based, decisions as required.

TEPC’s knowledge of horses, and technical knowledge of the planning system, allows us to bridge the gap between planning policy and client objectives.  We know the things we often for granted and which non-equestrian planning consultants of this nature do not understand – for example why stabling needs to be designed in a certain way or why arenas need to be a certain size.  We able to explain this to Local Planning Authorities and support clients in matching their expectations, and needs, against planning policy to ensure the highest chance of success for any applications made in the most cost-effective way.  We can assist with everything from obtaining plans and reports (such as ecology surveys, tree surveys or flood risk assessments) to create one single point of contact for clients to streamline the process from preparation to submission through to determination and, if required, appeal.

Since our launch, in January 2023, the first year has been a great success with attendance, with our stand, at both Your Horse Live (Stoneleigh – November) and the National Equine Show (NEC – March) in 2023.  These have been great to allow people to engage and ask all the questions they need.  Eleni has recorded a podcast, with the Yard Supplement magazine, on all things equestrian planning as well as doing editorial pieces in equestrian publications on subjects such as arena surfacing (relating to the use of shredded carpet) and planning.  Our website continues to be a source of information for users on all things planning from designing stables and arenas to what planning applications need (and when planning permission is needed).  It also features guest articles from related professions such as highway engineers and land management experts.  We are on a mission to myth bust the world of planning and development to ensure that the equestrian world has a solid, trustworthy, source of advice and support that truly understands their needs.

In early 2024, continuing this theme, we will be attending, with a stand, the National Equine Show at the NEC again in March and Eleni has been asked to speak at this event as part of a panel (on the skills stage) on careers in the equestrian sector that are not often thought about.  We have also hosted an online coffee morning event already this year to answer questions and provide support with any planning queries relating to their centres.  We will also attend Your Horse Live again, in November, as well as continuing to sponsor and support varying local equestrian shows as we did in 2023.

In just one year The Equestrian Planning Consultancy has made an impact and strong steps towards being one of the most renowned services of its type with it being one of the few of this nature that can actively demonstrate appropriate professional qualifications in both the property and equestrian sectors.  This combination allows us to bridge the gap between equestrian clients and Local Planning Authorities which is of great importance given that, ultimately, planning permission has, or will, impact upon every single equestrian business or landowner at some point to ensure that their use of the land, and any facilities constructed or required, are legal, in planning terms.

We don’t believe that planning and development has to be daunting.  You just need someone who understands both sides of the fence to get you the necessary permissions so you can get on with the fun stuff, looking after your horses, building what you need or running your equestrian business!