The Applications Process
The Planning Authority operates a charging regime for pre-application discussions. There are several advantages for potential applicants in using this service.
- Gaining a clearer understanding of the Council’s planning policies and other planning considerations material to a final decision.
- Improving the quality of your development proposals through engagement with officers at an early stage when the proposals can still be modified.
- Significantly increasing the likelihood of gaining planning permission first time round.
- Early identification of any legal agreements eg Section 106 for the provision of infrastructure such as play areas or section 278 for highway upgrades.
- Possible cost savings in not proceeding with a planning application if officers identify issues that may be difficult to overcome which suggest a high risk of refusal.
- Identifying which organisations you should contact at an early stage to establish which issues are likely to be raised and what supporting information you will need to provide.
- A better understanding of procedures and likely timescales for dealing with your planning application as well as the level and nature of information necessary to meet national and local validation requirements.
- Provision of the site’s known planning history.
Submitting an application
When an application is received, it is checked for completeness, using national and local validation criteria, and the appropriate fee. Incorrect applications will not be registered, and we will request the necessary information in order to ensure that the submission is considered complete.
Once complete, the application is acknowledged normally within 3 working days and you will receive confirmation of the case officer. The application is then entered onto the Planning Register with a unique number, and becomes a public document available for viewing at the Town Hall or on the Councils website. At this stage neighbours are informed, consultees are notified, and site/press notices displayed where necessary.
The case officer visits the site and assesses the proposal in light of current policies and guidance, and the comments received from neighbours and consultees. Where appropriate, changes to the plans will be requested.
Applications can be determined by the Planning Committee or by a senior officer (known as a Delegated decision). In cases where there are significant objections, or someone has requested to speak at the committee the application will be placed on the committee agenda. The case officer prepares a report, including a recommended decision and any conditions where appropriate, and this is verified by senior staff.
Proposals that raise no adverse issues can be delegated solely to officers, or in consultation with the Planning Panel, a small group of Members.
Once a decision has been made, the decision notice and a copy of the plans will be returned to you, normally within three days.
Appealing a decision
If consent has been refused then you may appeal against this decision to the Secretary of State although it is advisable to contact us again to see if your proposal can be altered to make it acceptable.