Making a Planning Application

How to apply for planning permission and how we deal with applications

Before you apply…

If you want to carry out a small extension or minor alterations, particularly to a residential property, you should first check whether you need planning permission using our Permitted Development Enquiry Service.

If you know you need planning permission we would encourage you to seek pre-application advice. This will identify any potential issues early and help the application process run more smoothly.

Submitting your application

You can apply online or download a paper application form using the planning portal. The site also includes guidance on which type of application to submit and a fee calculator. For guidance on paying application fees and the details you will need to submit with your application. Please see our validation guidance page.

How we deal with your application

Once your planning application is registered, we will put up a public notice near to the site. We will also upload the plans and other documents to our website. This is to make members of the public aware of the application so that they can view the details and submit comments if they wish.

Applications are assessed against a number of criteria including:

  • Whether the proposal complies with relevant national, strategic and local planning policies
  • The effect of the proposal on existing neighbouring properties and the local area
  • Comments from members of the public and organisations such as Historic England and Natural England

Some applications may be the subject of negotiations between the applicant/agent and the planning officer. However, this will normally only occur where issues can easily be resolved and dealt with within the time period allowed for the determination of the application.  

We will normally issue our decision in 6-8 weeks. If we refuse your application, you have the right to appeal.

Who makes the decision?

The planning officers make the decisions on most applications but some are referred to the planning board. In these cases, a committee of councillors examine the application and decide whether they agree with the planning officer’s recommendation.

Meetings of the planning board are open to the public. Both applicants and members of the public can speak in support of, or against, the proposal.

The Planning Board will normally only consider applications that:

  • Conflict with the Development Plan or other council policy, standards or guidance
  • Would affect the wider public interest, or are potentially controversial
  • Have been submitted by a member or senior officer of the council
  • Have been called in by the ward councillor for that area
  • Are recommended for approval by the planning officer but we have received 10 or more objections or a petition of 20 or more signatures from different addresses

The rules for how planning applications are decided are contained in our Scheme of Delegation.