Do you need planning permission or advice
Get advice on the planning system, how to make a planning application, questions regarding charges or follow up an existing application by calling us on 020 8359 3000 and selecting the relevant option.
Planning Permission is a way of asking us if you can start a piece of building work. We will either refuse or grant you permission.
You might need planning permission if you want to:
- build something new
- make a major change to your building; building an extension
- change the use of your building.
There are different rules depending on what you want to do. The planning portal has a list of rules for common building work projects for the home.
When don’t you need planning permission
Some building projects don't need planning permission. This is known as permitted development rights
Building projects that normally have permitted development rights include:
- industrial premises and warehouses, read the limits and conditions
- some outdoor signs and advertisements, read the special rules around these
- demolition (before you begin you must get approval to demolish from the planning department).
There are other projects that might not need planning permission. For example; projects that will have no impact on your neighbours or the environment. If you think this could apply to you, contact us.
In some cases it may not be clear if your development falls into the permitted development category.
If this is the case you can apply for a Lawful Development Certificate. This is not the same as planning permission, but is proof that your building work is lawful.
Planning permission: business premises
Most alterations to business premises do need planning permission, including:
- all shop and office extensions
- alterations to shop fronts
- external security shutters or grilles
- changes in the use of land or buildings.
The Town and Country Planning (Use Classes) Order 1987 (as amended) puts uses of land and buildings into various categories known as 'Use Classes'.
Please check the Planning Portal for land use classes and general advice and guidance on change of use, including additional change of use permitted development rights applying from 30 May 2013.
Larger home extensions
If you want to add a single storey rear extension, you might be eligible under the prior approval larger home extension consultation scheme.
If your property is within a conservation area then you will need to submit a householder application.
No development shall start until you receive written notification from us that either:
- prior approval is not required
- prior approval is required and given
- the expiry of a period of no less than 42 days following the date on which the information was received by us and no written notification has been sent to the developer as to whether prior approval is given or refused.
Before making an application:
read the guidance notes
If you wish to carry out internal or external works to a listed building you’ll need listed building consent and probably planning permission.
Our design and conservation team can advise you as to whether listed building consent is required for proposed works and can provide pre-application advise for your proposals.
It is a criminal offence to carry out work which needs listed building consent without obtaining it beforehand.
You’ll need to apply for permission if you wish to demolish a building, or part of a building within a conservation area.
Display of advertisements
Some forms of advertisement benefit from something called 'deemed consent' and can be put up without approval from us. The government's free booklet, Outdoor advertisements and signs: a guide for advertisers contains useful advice.
Please note that it is a criminal offence to display an advert that requires our consent without first getting that consent.