You may need to apply for planning permission if you want to:
- build an extension to your property or do other work to your home
- expand your business or change the use of your premises.
Some minor alterations and extensions can be carried out without planning permission, particularly to houses. This is known as permitted development.
You can get more information on Do you need permission? (www.planningportal.co.uk)
Planning Portal: Interactive guidance will help you establish if planning permission is required and/or building regulation approval needed.
However, if you would like an officer's informal decision on whether planning permission or listed building consent will be required, complete the Do I need planning permission (PDF) [423KB] (opens new window) form.
This type of enquiry will attract a fee the cost of which can be found on our Current pre-application advice charges page. Your completed form should be submitted by post along with a cheque for the required fee, or alternatively by email to firstname.lastname@example.org with payment over the phone by credit/debit card following our confirmed receipt of the completed form.
On receipt of your completed form and fee, we will check the planning history and whether permitted development rights have been removed from the property or whether the proposal meets the relevant planning legislation and other possible permissions/consents i.e. listed building consent, Article 4 directions, conservation area restrictions, etc. We will provide you with a written response with the officer's informal decision as to whether planning permission is/is not required. Alternatively, you can email email@example.com requesting a free 'Permitted development rights check' giving the properties full address.
A permitted development rights check will not tell you whether planning permission is required (or not) for your project and you must therefore check the legislation yourself to verify compliance with planning regulations. We will not be able to answer your specific question whether planning permission is required or not for your specific proposal under this type of request.
On receipt of your permitted development rights check, you may then visit our website and look at the General Permitted Development (England) Order 2015 for yourself, which includes the legislation for sensitive areas such as conservation areas.
Further information can be found by clicking on the following links:
We are working in partnership with Swindon Borough Council and independent experts iChoosr to give homeowners the opportunity to invest in renewables through a group-buying scheme for solar panels and battery storage with Solar Together Wiltshire (solartogether.co.uk).
This group-buying scheme offers solar panels with optional battery storage and EV charge points, as well as offering battery storage for residents who have already invested in solar panels and are looking to get more from the renewable energy they generate, as well as increase their independence from the grid.
You may need to make an application for planning permission or other consents for different types and locations of solar installation, and to understand the principles we will follow when assessing applications, see the dedicated page 'Making your home more environmentally friendly' for more information.
All enquiries relating to dropped kerb applications are answered by the vehicle access team. Information about the process can be found on streets and street care pages.
To find out if permission is required please contact the vehicle access team on 01225 713352 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) Order and Regulations 75-77 of the Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations
The Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) Order (the 'GPDO') grants planning permission for certain developments without the need for a planning application to the local planning authority. Development granted in this way is usually referred to as 'permitted development'. In its Schedule 2, the GPDO sets out what is permitted development in a list of 'Parts' and related 'Classes'; each Class includes the limitations of the permitted development relevant to the Class, and conditions.
For some Classes the conditions require a 'Prior Approval' process to be followed before the permitted development may commence. This is a formal submission to the local planning authority, but with only certain matters specified in the condition to be assessed. The local planning authority must decide whether or not its prior approval is required. Where it is decided that prior approval is required, the local planning authority can either approve, approve with conditions, or refuse the submission.
The Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations (the 'Habitats Regs') address the requirements for protecting sites that are internationally important for threatened habitats and species (for example, Special Areas of Conservation (SACs) and Special Protection Areas (SPAs), sometimes referred to as 'European sites'). This includes a requirement for assessment of 'plans and projects' by 'the competent authority' (e.g., the local planning authority) which are likely to have a significant effect on the sites. The assessment - referred to as 'Appropriate Assessment' - comprises a number of sequential tests, which are broadly:
- screening for 'likely significant effects', alone and in-combination with other plans and projects;
- following a conclusion of a significant effect, an appropriate assessment of the proposal on the conservation objectives of the site - the competent authority may only approve the proposal after having concluded that it will not adversely affect the integrity of the site (with or without mitigation);
- the competent authority may nevertheless approve a plan or project notwithstanding an adverse effect on the integrity of a SAC or SPA, subject to 3 tests: no feasible alternatives, imperative reasons of overriding public interest and that compensatory measures are secured;
- where the site concerned hosts a 'priority' habitat or species of pan-European importance (only applicable to SACs - habitats in danger of disappearance and endangered species, identified in annex I and II of the Habitats Directive), the competent authority can only consider reasons of public health and safety or primary environmental benefits, or other reasons after having regard to the opinion of the appropriate authority (in England, the Secretary of State).
Regulation 75 of the Habitats Regs states that it is a condition of any planning permission granted by the GPDO made on or after 30 November 2017 that development which is likely to have a significant effect on a European site or a European offshore marine site (either alone or in combination with other plans or projects), and which is not directly connected with or necessary to the management of the site, must not be begun until the developer has received written notification of the approval of the local planning authority under Regulation 77. Essentially the purpose of Regulation 75 is to, therefore, ensure that, when necessary, permitted development is subject to Appropriate Assessment in the same way as development requiring a planning application.
Regulation 77 sets out the process for applying for the written approval of the local planning authority. It states (verbatim) -
- an application to the local planning authority for approval, as mentioned in regulation 75, must:
- give details of the development which is intended to be carried out; and
- be accompanied by—
- a copy of any relevant notification by the appropriate nature conservation body* under regulation 76**; and
- any fee required to be paid***
- for the purposes of its consideration of the application the local planning authority must assume that the development is likely to have a relevant effect
- the authority must send a copy of the application to the appropriate nature conservation body and must take account of any representations made by it
- if in its representations the appropriate nature conservation body states its opinion that the development is not likely to have a relevant effect, the local planning authority must send a copy of the representations to the applicant
- the sending of the copy of the representations to the applicant under paragraph (4) has the same effect as a notification by the appropriate nature conservation body of its opinion under regulation 76(4)
- in any other case in which the application has been sent to the appropriate nature conservation body, the local planning authority must, taking account of any representations made by the appropriate nature conservation body, make an appropriate assessment of the implications of the development for the European site or European offshore marine site in view of that site's conservation objectives
- in the light of the conclusions of the assessment the local planning authority may approve the development only after having ascertained that it will not adversely affect the integrity of the site
As explained above, where the local planning authority has approved development under the GPDO's 'Prior Approval' procedures, it is still required to consider whether the development is likely to have an adverse effect upon the integrity of a European site. This means that the approved permitted development cannot be lawfully commenced until the application under Regulation 77 of the Habitats Regs has been made and approved by the local planning authority. The purpose of the Regulation 77 application is, therefore, to enable the local planning authority, along with the appropriate nature conservation body, to make the Appropriate Assessment of the implications for the European site(s). The local planning authority can then only approve the Regulation 77 application if it is satisfied that the development would not adversely affect the integrity of the site(s).
It follows that although a Prior Approval application can be approved without the Appropriate Assessment taking place, the commencement of the development cannot lawfully happen until the separate application under Regulation 77 is approved.
Regulation 77 does not provide a power to impose conditions on the grant of approval. Accordingly, if the Appropriate Assessment of the impact on the protected site requires mitigation to be secured, the mechanism for delivery will need to be a 'Section 106' planning obligation.
Where applicants are able to acquire credits, forming a part of an approved mitigation scheme delivered by a third party, the Regulation 77 application will need to be accompanied by a Section 106 planning obligation. The Section 106 planning obligation will need to confirm the level of credit required to mitigate the particular proposal, as well as confirmation that a credit forming part of an approved mitigation scheme has been acquired.
Where applicants propose to provide their own mitigation, the Section 106 planning obligation will need to present a detailed mitigation plan. This plan must include measures to provide for ongoing management for the life of the project, as well as confirmation of the method of delivery, including whether or not planning permission is required for the mitigation project.
To make a Regulation 77 application email email@example.com with 'Subject' title "Regulation 77 application", and include the following documents -
- details of the development to be carried out;
- sufficient information to enable the appropriate nature conservation body to determine whether or not the development will have a relevant effect on a protected site - including, if/as relevant, details of any proposed mitigation and related Section 106 planning obligation;
- a response to the proposal from the appropriate nature conservation body (Natural England), if already applied for under Regulation 76 and available; Applicants are encouraged to include this response with their application to save time;
- confirmation of intention to pay the £30 fee