If you want to build a hut, now is a good time to start exploring the possibility. Recent changes in planning policy mean that opportunities for new hutting are opening up. See our planning pages for more detail.
However, availability of huts on existing sites is still extremely limited, with lengthy waiting lists for any huts or sites that do become available.
New hut sites are beginning to develop – we know of several in the planning phase. Many people use the Thousand Huts Facebook page as a way of reaching out to other hutters to hear of opportunities of huts for sale, or seek collaboration on land purchase or rental. Many landowners seem open to the possiblity of renting land to hutters. As long as there is a fair and robust legal contract this can be a beneficial arrangement for both parties. We are producing a voluntary code of good practice to form the basis of sound legal agreements between hutters and landowners.
Currently, the Scottish Government is consulting on a possible exemption of huts from building regulations. If the proposals are supported, this will remove another barrier to hutting. The result of this consultation will be announced in Summer 2016. As a result of these shifts, we are beginning to see new proposals for hut sites coming forward.
While it will take time to see a wave of new huts on the ground, the growing network of hut enthusiasts will gradually start creating opportunities of its own – on private land, public land, and community owned land.
To support planners and hut builders, we have produced New hutting developments: Good practice guidance on the planning, development and management of huts and hut sites, a document reviewed by planning professionals on a local and national level. It is based on the SPP definition of a hut:
A simple building used intermittently as recreational accommodation (i.e. not a principal residence); having an internal floor area of no more than 30m2; constructed from low impact materials; generally not connected to mains water, electricity or sewerage; and built in such a way that it is removable with little or no trace at the end of its life. Huts may be built singly or in groups.
The document covers a wide range of planning considerations including: What is a hut; use patterns of huts; where might huts be built; services; tenure; and matters affecting the land around huts. It may help you in the process of submitting your own huts planning application.