Natural England Camping Exemption Certificate for DofE
The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award has recently been granted a five-year Camping Exemption Certificate for England and Wales by Natural England. The Camping Exemption Certificate (due to expire in October 2023) allows recreational organisation to camp on land without a site licence or the need to apply for planning permission and should allow a number of ‘greenfield’ sites to offer camping to more DofE participants than before.
In practice in means that under section 269 of the Public Health Act 1936 that the following is permitted:
– The use of any land owned by the exempted organisation (or provided or used by them) to be used for tented camping without the need for a site licence from the local authority
– DofE participants (and adults) to put up tents on any site with the permission of the owner
– DofE participants (and adults) to use land for the purpose of recreation or instruction, and to erect or place tents on the land for those purposes.
This should prove to be of great benefit to a number of campsites that solely accommodate DofE groups, enabling them to welcome more groups to their sites across the year. The exemption covers both England and Wales, whilst in Scotland there is no requirement to hold such a licence.