Pre-application advice for businesses
Advice for developers
If you are a developer or a professional adviser, you should make an appointment with a planning officer to discuss your proposals. The following guides give basic information and we recommend you contact us to be sure of the most up-to-date advice:
It is our policy to encourage and provide pre-application planning advice. This is beneficial to both customers and us in enabling planning applications to be submitted with a good chance of approval within government target dates.
However the cost of providing this service is not covered by planning application fees. We have decided to charge for pre-application advice.
The charges are based on the scale of proposals and the level of response required by the developer. Our ability to respond to requests for pre-application advice will depend on the level of information provided by the developer. This varies between submitting a site plan with a request for in-principle advice as to whether development of a particular type would be acceptable, to schemes which have progressed to a reasonable level of detail.
Prospective applicants for planning permission should consider carefully what advice to seek at pre-application stage as a planning application may be refused if relevant matters have not been addressed in the application.
Internal consultations will be undertaken on key issues. We may carry out external consultation maybe undertaken but a response from external consultees cannot be guaranteed.
Our response could consist of:
- an indication of whether the proposal is likely to be acceptable in policy terms
- detailed comment on any amenity or design constraints
- detailed comment on other constraints
- advice following response to consultations
- worked-up information on Section 106 planning obligations
- detailed validation requirements.
Typical service standards
We will process request for pre-application advice in order of receiving them and will respond when consultee comments are available.
After the initial meeting and response, the developer might seek additional comments and further meetings. Additional charges for such follow-up advice will apply.
Fill in the Development Control Pre-application Form and return it with payment and any information or plans you wish to submit at the outset for us to consider. We will not progress your request for advice, until we have received payment.
We recommend the following is submitted with any pre-application:
- Pre-application form
- Supporting statement (outlining development proposal)
- Site location plan
- Any proposal plans (site layout, floor plans, elevations, sections)
- Any relevant surveys/reports carried out
- Commercially sensitive material checklist
'Without prejudice' advice
Our planning officers will try to ensure that any pre-application advice is robust. However, any advice given is without prejudice and not binding on any future decision we might make and cannot pre-empt consideration of a formal application. Also, we might change our views on the merits of a proposal if there is a change in circumstances after we have given pre-application advice, such as a change in government policy or case law.
We are required to make decisions on valid applications within timescales set by government. You risk refusal if you have not submitted all the information we require at the outset.
We have published guidance on how we deal with planning applications.
All fees are effective from 1 January 2023.
|Very Large development||
more than 4Ha
Offices/industry/retail 10,000+sqm/more than 4 Ha
Other uses: 10,000+ Sqm/more than 2Ha
£3600 + £500 per extra meeting per hour
1 – 4 Ha
Other uses: 1,000 – 9,999 Sqm
(outline 1 - 4 Ha)
|£3000 + £400 per extra meeting per hour|
0 - 1 ha
Other uses: 0-1000 Sqm
|£1560 + £300 per extra meeting per hour|
|Works to Listed Buildings|
|Change of use (not including major developments/engineering work)|
|Domestic Extensions and one dwelling||
Minor commercial extensions (per site)
Advertisement proposals (per site)
|Actual High Hedge applications|
(includes 20% VAT)
|Advice which is not covered by any of the above categories or requires a fee to be agreed with the chief planning officer||A bespoke fee will be agreed in advance based on the likely time taken, the level of experience of the officer as well as other specialists required to provide any such advice|