SPRINGFIELD Country Hotel near Wareham has been refused a certificate of lawfulness for a camper van and caravan for staff accommodation.

Dorset Council refused the application for a Winnebago-style vehicle and a caravan in the grounds of the Grange Road hotel.

The vehicles have been parked close to authorised staff accommodation for a number of years.

Planning officers decided that although the caravan may have been there since 1990 the camper home did not show up on a 2009 aerial picture, although it was there in 2014. Requests for further information to substantiate the claims from the hotel’s planning agents were not responded to, according to a report.

The council decided that although the caravan may have been on site for ten years or more there was nothing to prove that either or both had both been used for staff accommodation for a period of ten years or more, qualifying for lawful use.

“Officers consider that in the absence of clear evidence to support the case, the certificate cannot be supported... there is a lack of evidence for the required timeframe to be able find in support of the certificate,” said the council report.