Planning applications Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. Who do you consult on applications?

A site notice is placed near the site to notify the public of the application. In addition to neighbours, technical and statutory consultees may be required to comment on applications, such as Historic England, Natural England, and the Local Highways Authority. All comments received will be considered before deciding on an application.

2. How much time do I have to comment on a planning application?

The statutory timescale for commenting on an application is 21 days from the date the site notice is put up. All comments received during this time will be considered.

3. Will an Officer visit the site?

For most types of applications, the Planning Officer will undertake a site visit to carry out an appraisal. The Planning Officer will contact the applicant or the agent to arrange the site visit. Photographs will be taken during the site visit by the Planning Officer, and these will be kept confidential; viewed by internal officers only to help consider the application.

4. What does a delegated decision mean?

Certain Senior Planning Officers have 'delegated powers' which enable them to determine most minor planning applications without the necessity of being referred to the Planning Committee. This includes most householder applications and other smaller scale proposals.

5. What happens if an application goes to committee?

If a planning application is to be determined at committee, the application will be published 5 working days before the date of the meeting. Please see the Planning Committee Agendas.

At Planning Committee, the Planning Officer will present the application and state the reasons for their recommendation. Members of the public can attend Planning Committees and arrangements for public speaking are set out on our website.

Further information on what happens at Planning Committee is available on our Committees pages.

6. How long does the planning permission last?

In most cases building work must be started within three years of the permission being granted.

7. Do I need planning permission to repair or replace windows or doors?

For guidance on whether you require permission to repair or replace windows or door, please see the Planning Portal - windows and doors website.

8. How do I find the permitted use of a site?

You can find out the permitted use of a site by submitting an application for a lawful development certificate.

9. My neighbours are building something without planning permission, what should I do?

Please contact our planning enforcement team in which you can find their contact details on our planning enforcement pages. They will investigate whether there is a breach of planning control.

10. Can you tell me who owns land, a boundary or fence?

You can find details about land ownership on the Land Registry website.

11. Do I need planning permission for a dropped kerb or access?

You should contact directly to find this out.

12. Do I need planning permission to run a business from home?

Planning permission may not be required for a householder to run a business from home, providing it does not change the overall character of the property as a residence. Further information on this can be found on the Planning Portal.

You may also need to tell our Council Tax section about your business, and if you are a tenant in your property, you should check with your landlord that you have their permission.

You can ask the Council to confirm whether or not you need planning permission by applying for a certificate of lawfulness.

13. Are there other ways than the Planning Portal to apply?

You can submit an application via email to You will need to download the relevant application form from the Planning Portal website

14. What is a free go?

If you resubmit your application within 12 months of the decision, you may benefit from a 'free go' where a fee will not be charged for the second application. This is subject to the following criteria:

  • This must be the first 'free go' (only one is allowed)
  • The application site and red line boundary must be the same as previously applied
  • The proposal must be of a similar character and application type
  • It must be the same applicant as previously applied

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