Guide to making a planning application

Advice on how to apply for planning permission and what you need to provide.

Pre-application advice

Before you apply for planning permission, you may find it helpful to discuss your proposals with us first. There is a charge for this service but it can help you get your application right, which could save you time and money.

You can contact our planning team for advice using the contact details on this page.

How pre-application advice can help

If you send us your proposals and plans before you prepare a formal application, we can advise you informally about whether your application is likely to be successful, or not.

We can also tell you what information you need to provide and how soon we are likely to make a decision once you've applied.

By doing this, you could avoid having your application refused or having to make costly amendments.

Once you have submitted an application, there is only limited time for making amendments and we will not normally agree further changes, especially where we would need to carry out more consultation.

For large or complex development proposals, it is good practice to include substantial pre-application discussions and consultations before you submit an application. This is likely to include consultation with residents and organisations, including both statutory and non-statutory bodies. In most cases, we will want to agree a timetable for submitting and deciding on the application.

Applying online

The best way to apply for planning permission is online. You can do this through the national Planning Portal. If you do this, you may not need to submit a paper copy.

Applying by post

If you want to submit a planning application by post, you can download the forms your need from the Planning Portal, fill them in and send them back to us. You will also find notes available to help you with your application.

It is important that you submit two duplicate paper copies of the application form and all documents. We will accept photocopies.

For larger or more complex applications, we may need further sets of drawings. You can post your completed application or hand it in at the council offices.

Please note, these forms are to apply for planning permission only. They do not cover building regulations approval.

Building regulations

Building regulations cover the control of building works for fire resistance, structural stability, ventilation, thermal insulation and drainage, rather than the site, design and external appearance of the building. For more information, see our Building regulations page.

Building regulations approval

In many cases, you will also need building regulations approval for work carried out. For more details, see our Building regulations page or contact our Building Control team using the contact details on this page.

We deal with applications for building regulations approval separately to planning applications, so you will need to submit additional forms and plans.

It is possible that we could refuse planning permission and give building regulations approval for a specific proposal (and vice versa). It is up to you to make sure that you have all the necessary consent before starting work.

Creating a site plan for a planning application

If you submit a planning application, you will normally have to include a map extract showing the location of the site as well. This is normally at a scale of 1:1250.

The map extract needs to show two named roads, a north arrow and the site outlined in red. You also need to include a block plan, at a scale of 1:500, which shows the proposed 'footprint' of the development.

Ordnance Survey maps - important information

Most maps use Ordnance Survey data, which is protected by Crown Copyright. If you are submitting maps with Ordnance Survey data as part of your planning application, you must show the Ordnance Survey licence number on the plans.

If you do not show the Ordnance Survey licence number on the plans, or we believe that the data does not have the correct licence, your application will not be valid. It is an offence to use Ordnance Survey data without the appropriate licence. We will notify you if your application is invalid for this reason.

You can buy map extracts from us. Please contact our customer services team using the contact details on this page to pay by card. We will send you the plans by post. You can also visit our customer services team at the council offices.

You will find more information about Crown copyright from Ordnance Survey on the Ordnance Survey website.

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