Class F1 was also introduced alongside Class E as part of the Business and Planning Act 2020. According to Planning Aid England, Class F1 comprises “schools, museums, galleries (not for sale), libraries, halls, places of worship, church halls, law courts, non-residential education and training centres (all former Class D1 uses)”.
Higher education buildings now fall under ‘learning and non-residential institutions’ within the F1 category. While planning permission is not required for changes of use within the same use class, it is needed when switching from one class to another. So, for academic institutions looking to convert former commercial buildings, planning permission is essential to enable the shift from Class B1/E to F1.