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Pre-application advice

For all initial enquiries, please contact the duty planning officer using the online form.

Make enquiry

For more complex schemes, a more detailed assessment and response may be required (the duty officer will advise if this is the case).  This can be obtained using our pre-application service detailed below.

Benefits of advice

The key benefits of obtaining formal pre-application advice are:

  • an understanding of how national and local policies and guidance will be applied to your proposal
  • a potential for reducing the time your professional advisors spend in working up the proposals
  • an indication of proposals that are likely to be unacceptable, so saving you the cost of pursuing a formal application
  • tailored advice including technical specialists relevant to the scope and nature of the proposed development
  • advice on what information you need to provide in order for your application to be validated and considered by the authority

Advice is not mandatory, however, engagement before submitting an application is considered to be best practice; it enables Council officers and developers to work together to achieve sustainable development and can help to avoid additional costs and delay.

Pre-application advice

Before you start ensure you have the following information ready:

  • a location and site plan (giving post code and grid ref where appropriate) which can be obtained from the Planning portal website
  • sketches of the proposal
  • photographs of the site and surroundings
  • the appropriate fee (see above)
  • a brief summary of the proposals and the state of the existing site
  • a list of any key issues for which you require a specific response

You will need to complete our Pre-application advice form:

Pre-application enquiries can either be submitted via email or post. Applications submitted by email help us to provide you with a more rapid response.

Upon receiving your pre-application form we will telephone you to discuss timescales and the scope of the advice required.

Why do we charge and what are the charges

The Council has decided that the cost of providing this service should be recovered directly from the developer and not fall as a general cost to the council taxpayer. It should be noted that the current statutory planning application fees do not cover the cost of pre-application advice given by the Council.

For each type of development a charge will apply for formal pre-application advice given by the Council. The charges are outlined in detail in the pre-application guide and are summarised below. All charges are inclusive of VAT.

  • Category A (larger major proposals): £2,040
  • Category B (major proposals): £1,200
  • Category C (minor proposals e.g. three to nine dwellings or proposals more than 75 square metres): £600
  • Category D (other proposals): £270
  • Pre application fees (PDF, 181KB)

We will not charge for the following:

  • householder applications for alterations and/or extensions to dwellings or flats and lawful development certificates
  • schemes for discharge of or compliance with planning conditions
  • prior approvals
  • car parking (under 0.1 hectare in area), service roads or other accesses
  • works to a listed building (where there is no requirement for planning permission other than householder planning permission)
  • works to trees in conservation areas
  • works to protected trees

If I pay for the advice will it secure my planning permission?

No. Whilst we will do our best to work positively and proactively with developers, all advice is given without prejudice to the outcome of any subsequent application. Your planning application will be subject to notification/consultation of interested parties and, dependant on the views expressed, this may affect the outcome of your application.

Can I make an appointment to see a Duty Planning Officer?

No as we do not offer this service. For all initial enquiries you must contact the Duty Planning Officer online.

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