Planning Service update
General operational information
Our Planning Service is operating in the face of unprecedented challenges resulting from the pandemic and a significant increase in planning application submissions. We are continuing to react and bring forward different ways of working and resources as quickly as possible. However, workloads across the service remain exceptionally high which is affecting response times from Officers which are much longer than normal.
There is currently a back log of planning applications and as a consequence different processes are currently in place to manage the work as efficiently as possible.
We understand this is not ideal for our customers and are working hard to reduce the waiting times but would thank you in advance for your patience.
Most applications are taking 4-6 months to determine, longer for more complex matters. Valid applications continue to be registered and the appropriate publicity and consultations are taking place but allocation to a case officer is being delayed to manage workloads.
- It will take up to 4 months for an application to be allocated to a case officer
- Once allocated, agents or applicants will be contacted by the case officer within 2 weeks to provide an initial update and time frame for decision
- We will be asking applicants / agents for extensions of time on applications where necessary
- Please monitor the website for comments and consultation responses and await contact from the case officer before asking the Service for an update on your application
Note: in order to speed up the process of determination and to assist our Officers:
- Please ensure submitted applications include all necessary information for them to be assessed effectively by Officers and consultees
- Do not submit any updates / revisions to the application until you have agreed this with the Officer as this creates confusion for the public and consultees
- You will be given an opportunity to resolve any minor problems with applications
Commenting on a planning application.
If you are unable to arrange for someone to submit your comments electronically contact our Customer Service team on 0300 123 5014. There may be a delay with comments being published to the website but they will still be received and considered by the planning officer.
Virtual Planning Committees ended in May last year (2021) and are now back to being held face-to-face. Venues may be different and there may be restrictions on numbers being able to attend. Meetings will continue to be audio broadcast.
Unfortunately to manage the high application numbers and focus on those already submitted we are currently not accepting pre-application enquiries for smaller schemes. Major pre-application request will however continue.
Submissions and payments should be made electronically where possible, postal receipting is limited. Where possible this will be completed by exchange of electronic information, with any discussion and meetings taking place via Microsoft Teams.
Permitted Development Enquiries
Please do not submit any new Permitted Development Enquiries at this time.
Planning application records and other discretionary services
Historical information associated with a planning application can be requested, these will be made available electronically where possible, however; the full history search service remains unavailable.
Please submit any requests via email to firstname.lastname@example.org where your request will be dealt with.
Planning committees and other meetings
Monitor the Council Meetings pages for more up to date information.
Planning enforcement continues albeit with increased numbers of complaints and high caseloads. There is new legislation to allow certain temporary changes of use to takeaways. We will also take a pragmatic approach to some developments which are undertaken purely to cope with the ongoing impact of COVID 19, such as construction hours and longer hours for retail uses. We will inform you of our intended course of action when making an initial assessment of your complaint. Response times will again be longer than normal.
Page last reviewed: 09 May 2022
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