Planning officers reveal tiny homes with toilet in the kitchen

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Toilet in kitchen

Planning officers have revealed one of the weirdest set-ups of any of the buildings they have ever inspected. There were two people living in an outbuilding in a Cambridge garden without planning permission - but the really odd thing was that their kitchen and toilet were in the same room.

Clearly these conditions fell foul of planning rules. But just how small can you legally go?


A report in the Cambridge News revealed that planning officers had suspected that people were living in a set of outbuildings in Cambridge without planning permission. When they inspected them, not only did they find the tiny buildings occupied, but the conditions were bizarre. One building contained a kitchen with a toilet installed at one end.

The Daily Mail reported that the bizarre arrangement came about when the landlord was originally told to take down a two-bedroom chalet bungalow in his back garden (built without permission).
In response he took the kitchen out of the bungalow and put it in a nearby outbuilding - which already contained the toilet.

Take a look inside the tiny homes:

The tiny chalet bungalow and shed house people call home

The tiny chalet bungalow and shed house people call home



He argued that this proved that the tenants were using facilities in the main house - and that the bungalow didn't count as separate accommodation, so didn't need planning permission. He also said that the kitchen with the toilet in it was seen in the transition phase - before the kitchen was properly installed and the toilet removed.

The planning officers disagreed and he has been ordered to demolish the building.

Bijou living

This property clearly crossed the line. However, with space increasingly tight in UK towns and cities, developers and creative individuals have been finding new ways to live in ever-smaller homes.

Research from the Royal Institute of British Architects has claimed that homes are getting too small. They found that 47% of people claimed they don't have enough room for their furniture, 57% said they didn't have enough storage space and 28% of people couldn't get away from the noise of their neighbours. They added that new homes in Ireland were 15% bigger, and in Holland they were 80% larger.

However, there are plenty of people who have adapted to living perfectly well in small properties.
The smallest house in Britain is Quay House in the Welsh village of Conway.There are two tiny rooms (both smaller than a double bed) and no indoor toilet. This particular property is now just a tourist attraction, but it was once a functioning home.

One of the smallest flats in the country is a studio 'apartment' in a block near Harrods. It went on the market last year, so buyers got to look round the home which measures just 10ft 4in by 8ft 4in. It contains a main room which is barely big enough for a single bed, and a tiny second wet room and toilet. The sellers were asking £90,000, but reportedly attracted offers of more than £120,000.

Another impressively tiny space was the former cleaner's cupboard in Chelsea, which measures 11ft 3in by 7ft 3in and went on the market for £170,000 in 2007 - despite the fact it required a complete refit to make it liveable.

However, a real contender for the title of the smallest flat in the country is the 7ft 6in by 3ft 4in studio in Notting Hill. Half of the room is taken up with a tiny bathroom and cupboard - and the bed is built on top of them. The scant space next to the bed is a mini kitchenette. It was built out of a former cupboard during the 1980s property boom, and has been valued at over £100,000.

The cob house that was built for £150

The cob house that was built for £150