Advice on Planning Permission
Please be aware that from the 10th August 2006, under Section 327A of the amended Town and Country Planning Act 1990, Planning Authorities are expressly prohibited from entertaining planning applications unless a design and access statement is provided.
Design and Access Statements are required for all planning applications, except:
- Changes of use, unless the scheme includes any form of operational development
- Engineering or mining operations
- Householder applications where the site does not fall within a Designated Area.
A 'Designated Area' means a National Park, Site of Special Scientific Interest, Conservation Area, Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, World Heritage Site and The Broads.
Applications for Listed Building Consent must always be accompanied by a Design and Access Statement regardless of their designation. Where there is a planning application submitted in parallel with an application for Listed Building Consent, a single, combined statement should address the requirements of both.
Please go to Design and Access Statements page
for further information.
If you intend to carry out building works or change the use of a property or land, you will probably need planning permission. To help you plan and design the building works, you may decide to appoint an agent to act for you, perhaps an architect or planning consultant, or you may decide to prepare things yourself. Either way, for all but the simplest proposals, it is generally a good idea for you or your agent to approach the District Council's planning department for some advice. We try to make this as fair and as accurate as possible. This note explains the best way in which to get that advice.
Is permission needed?
Some kinds of development can be carried out without asking for planning permission from the District Council. They are called permitted development. For detailed information, please refer to the Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development)(Amendment)(No2)(England)Order 2008 (pdf file)(Opens new window to the Office of Public Sector Information website).
Legislation allowing larger single-storey rear extensions to be built under permitted development came into force on the 30 May 2013. The new size limits are subject to a neighbour consultation scheme. Details can be found at www.planningportal.gov.uk/permission/commonprojects/extensions/.
However, these permitted development rights may have been removed in some cases by the Council using an Article 4 Direction. Details on Article 4 Directions made by South Bucks are available from Planning Officers. For a formal determination as to whether planning permission is required or not you need to submit an application for a Certificate of Lawfulness. The appropriate forms
are available from the Council Offices, or through customer services, contact details at the bottom of page.
Further details can be accessed by visiting the planning portal site
for the Practical guidance on what is and is not Permitted Development for Housing and Terrace. (Opens new window to Planning Portal website)
A Guide for Business on Planning Permission can be found on the Communities and Local Government Website.
(Opens new window to external site)
For more information about planning permission, please click the planning portal icon to access the government's online service for planning.
It is important to note that planning permission is quite separate from an approval under building regulations which is concerned with making sure buildings are constructed safely and are suitable for their purpose. So you should always check with the Council's Building Control sectionon 01895-837212.
What are the chances of permission being granted?
The District's planning officers can tell you whether proposals appear to be in line with agreed policies and the chances of planning permission being granted. You should note though that the officer can only give you advice because the decision may be made by a Committee of Councillors.
The Council receives over 2000 applications and over 100 appeals each year and thousands of enquiries. To help you receive the advice you need and to help us manage our work, there are a few simple guidelines we ask you to follow.
1. Advice by telephone
If you want general advice on our policies or whether a certain type of development might be acceptable in principle, we can normally give you this on the telephone. If officers are writing reports to meet a Committee deadline, or visiting sites, we may have a telephone answering service operating. On these occasions, we guarantee to return your call if you leave details. By having the file in front of us when we ring, we should be able to give you a better and faster answer to your query.
2. Advice in writing
If you want some feedback on the details of a proposal, you may wish to write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
. In some cases a scheme would need to be seen by other people, such as engineers from Buckinghamshire County Council who look at the effect of a proposal on roads and we may suggest that you contact them direct. We try to respond in 10 working days. A fee may be payable. Details are given below.
3. Arrange a meeting
Meetings are not always the best way of obtaining information, although sometimes, if there are lots of options to discuss, they may be sensible. We ask that you only request a meeting where it is really needed. We are unlikely to be prepared to have a meeting to discuss a proposal which goes against national or local policies.
Before we arrange a meeting we ask you to send in a description and sketch drawings of your proposals and a plan clearly showing the site involved. This allows us to think about your scheme and perhaps discuss it with colleagues and give you the best advice when we meet. If you ask to keep the discussion confidential, we shall try to keep to this, although later on in the planning process, file notes of meetings might need to be shown. Again a fee may be payable. Details are given below.
Fees for Advice:
In certain circumstances a fee may be payable for a meeting or for pre-application advice. Please see Fees for Some Pre-Application and Post Application Planning Advice
Sites which are being sold
When a site where building could take place is being marketed, the Council often receives many requests for meetings and telephone discussions with prospective purchasers, perhaps just before an auction. It is not possible to see everybody and meeting a few would be unfair. In these circumstances, agents selling sites are asked to contact us before they market a site and let us have details of the land which enables us to give better advice to all, helping all parties, including the seller.
Amending an Application
The Council will determine the proposal on the basis of the submitted plans, as such you will not be able to revise or amend the drawings once submitted. Therefore it is better to try and get the details of the proposal right before an application is sent in. This makes it easier for the public to understand and may avoid delay issuing a decision. Additional information on submitting an application and general planning advice can be found on the Planning Portal website.
Advice from the Environment Agency
The Environment Agency provides pre-planning application advice for a proposed development site which is a hectare or more, in flood zones 2 or 3, is close to a watercourse, is on potentially contaminated land, or is to handle waste or hazardous substances. Please contact them on email@example.com
so they can highlight any issues and aim to resolve them prior to the submission of any planning application.
More details are contained in the pdf document below.
All documents open in a new window.
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If you have any queries, contact Planning Administration at:
Tel:01895 837342, 01895 837210