Coronavirus: changes to planning service

Determination of planning applications

Are you still determining applications?

Yes, the Planning service have a robust system to determine applications remotely.  We have the technology to be able to do this.  We have changed some of our working practices around site notices and site visits.

Planning Applications

We are currently able to register planning applications remotely, although please appreciate that for bigger applications there may be delays in uploading all the supporting information.  The government lockdown has meant that the council can only accept electronic applications at the current time and would therefore request submission via the planning portal.

Planning Fees

Payment should made either online (planning portal); phone payment or BACS.

Site notices

We still have a statutory obligation to notify neighbours of current planning applications and we are still maintaining that part of the process.  While we publicise applications through the posting of notices, this is not the only way people can find out about applications in your area.  We would strongly recommend that people sign up for Planning Finder via our website

It’s easy to use, simply register online with your details, you will be asked to select a radius from your postcode as to how far you wish to receive email notifications of planning applications in your area. 

If there is a particular application you want to keep updated on, just simply select to “follow” the application. 

Our weekly planning list is also advertised on our website. Please note that this is an additional way of knowing what planning applications are being considered in your street/area, we will still be posting site notices.

Site visits

As part of the current government advice on social distancing, officers are not making the usual site visits. 

However, where an application cannot be assessed without the need for a visit, these are dealt with on a case by case scenario.  Officers can still assess applications by reviewing planning histories, and contacting  applicants to undertake virtual site visits by requesting  photographs with guidance from the officers.  This is not the case for all applications but you may be asked to provide photographs

Planning meetings

Are you still having meetings?

No.  In line with the government guidelines on social distancing, we are putting any pre-arranged meetings on hold but Officers are still in contact with the public; customers and applicants by other means.  We have conference calling; email; mobiles; virtual meetings through Microsoft Teams.  We are still in touch with our customers

Are you still having Planning Committees?

Council meetings have now returned face-to-face. Please see our website for future planning meeting dates and what measures we have put in place.