Should I object?
You may have received a letter notifying you of a nearby development proposal. If you have any concerns then any objection must be rational, impersonal and directed principally to the planning issues raised by the proposal.
What should I do next?
Establish the facts, because all too often objections are submitted which are based on an incorrect understanding of the application. You can inspect the application forms, plans, drawings and other information submitted by the applicant. You may wish to discuss the application with a Planning Officer so that any technical details can be better appreciated.
You may wish to consider whether simply discussing the application with the applicant could resolve any of your concerns which could lead to the application being modified or improved.
Making your objection
If after considering the application and reviewing the options you still wish to make representations then the next step is to send your comments in writing to the Places Directorate. Your objections will need to be made within the 21 day consultation period.
What happens to my comments?
The Corporate Director Places Directorate will consider your comments along with council and national policies and guidelines.
Most planning applications are determined under delegated powers by the planning officers but if the application needs to be considered by the Planning Committee we will not copy all the letters received but your comments will be summarised in a report. Your letter may be copied and circulated to members with the committee papers. A petition and/or a bundle of standard letters will be regarded as one objection when referred to in the officer's report.
What matters will the committee take into account?
The Planning Committee considers all applications on planning grounds only. The council's Unitary Development Plan is an important consideration so you may wish to refer to relevant policies in your letter of objection.
Issues the committee can normally consider
- overlooking or loss of privacy
- adequate parking and servicing
- overbearing nature of proposal
- loss of trees
- loss of ecological habitats
- design and appearance
- layout and density of buildings
- effect on listed building(s) and Conservation Areas
- access or highways safety
- traffic generation
- noise and disturbance from the scheme
- disturbance from smells
- public visual amenity, but not loss of private individual’s view
- flood risk
Issues the committee cannot normally consider
- loss of value to individual property
- loss of view
- boundary disputes including encroachment of foundations, gutters
- private covenants or agreements
- the applicant’s personal conduct or history
- the applicant’s motives
- potential profit for the applicant or from the application
- private rights to light
- private rights to way
- damage to property
- disruption during any construction phase
- loss of trade or competitors
- age, health, status, background, work patterns of the objector
- time taken to do the work
- capacity of private drains
- building or structural techniques
- alcohol or gaming licences
The above issues do not cover everything, but are meant as a guide to help you when preparing your statement.
Can I make verbal representation to the Planning Committee?
If the application needs to be considered by the Planning Committee there will be an opportunity for the applicant or agent or supporters and objectors to address the Committee before a decision is made.
If you have sent a letter and if the application needs to be considered by the Planning Committee, we will write to you with the date of the meeting at which it will be considered. If you have sent a petition or a proforma style letter, only the originator of the petition or letter will be informed in writing. You will also be advised how the Planning Committee operates and how you can take part in the proceedings. A leaflet Consideration of Planning Applications at Planning Committee (.pdf, 426Kb) has been prepared to explain this procedure.
What decision can be made?
That the planning application should be:
- Approved, possibly with conditions
- Deferred to enable amendments or further information to be submitted
- Deferred to enable the Planning Committee to visit the site or a video presentation to be prepared
What happens next?
If planning permission is refused the applicant may choose to appeal to Communities and Local Government (external link). Anyone who has submitted comments about the original application or who has spoken about the application at the committee will be informed and given the opportunity to comment further. However, should the council approve the application, interested parties do not have the right of appeal, although if you consider the council acted in a manner that did not conform to established procedures then you might consider a complaint to the Ombudsman (external link).