What needs planning permission

Pre application advice service

The pre-application advice service was suspended from 1 January 2022 to the end of December 2022.  However, following a recent review, and recognising the value of pre-application advice to the outcome of any application that may be submitted, this service will be re-introduced from 1st January 2023.  We are making some changes to the way in which we handle your pre-application submissions and will no longer provide advice for householder developments.  For all householder developments requiring consent, please proceed straight to the planning application stage and submit your application through the National Planning Portal.  The timescales for providing a written response to pre-application enquiries will also change.  This will be increased to two months for local pre-applications and four months for major applications.  An updated pre-application guidance note will be available on our web pages soon.

We will not be providing written confirmation in response to general queries about the need for planning permission.  If you need formal written confirmation, you should submit an application for a Certificate of Lawfulness for a Proposed Use or Development. Guidance on what needs planning permission is available on our web pages. 

Pre application advice

It is our policy to encourage and provide pre application advice. This paid for service offers significant benefits by providing greater certainty to the outcome of any application that may be submitted and speeding up the application process. We recommend that you seek formal pre application advice from us before you submit a planning application. You may request one of the following options:

  • written response
  • meeting and written response

Submit a pre application form

More information is available in our pre-application guidance note

Category of development

Written Response

Meeting with written response

Local Development (other than housing)



Proposals for one to two houses or flats



Housing developments (3-49 houses)



Housing developments (more than 49 houses or sites over two hectares)



Renewable Energy Projects over two hectares



All other major developments



Fee changes are liable to change without consultation.

Exceptions to charges

Advice will be provided free of charge in the following cases:

  • advice in respect of proposals which only require listed building consent or conservation area consent
  • developments solely proposing disabled facilities or access
  • 100% Affordable Housing Schemes
  • proposals where the applicant/developer is a registered charity or a Community Council
  • discussions with residents potentially affected by developments
  • one meeting or written response following an refusal of an application, where revisions to that refused scheme within the same application site are proposed

Information to provide with your proposal

In order for advice to be effective it is essential that you provide enough information on your proposals and this may include:

  • a scaled plan showing the site and identifying other land within the ownership or control of the applicant
  • any relevant planning history that you are aware of, details of the existing use, a schedule of any existing floorspace and any other background information that is relevant to the proposal
  • a topographical site survey or other information sufficient to understand existing and proposed site levels in relation to the surrounding area
  • a description of the proposal, including a calculation of any new/additional floorspace if appropriate
  • any necessary scaled plans, elevations, sections and photographs (which are particularly useful to understand the proposal and its context)
  • in the case of more significant proposals, a draft Design and Access Statement