STEP 1 - Validation
On submission of your planning application, the council should acknowledge receipt within a few days. Applications are checked to make sure that all the required documentation and plans are present and that the correct fee has been submitted. If anything is missing the council will contact the applicant requesting the required information before the application can be validated and registered.If the applicant has appointed an agent all communications during the process will go to the agent.
STEP 2 - Registration
The application is entered into the register of applications and an acknowledgement letter is sent to the applicant/agent. The letter will provide the name of the case officer dealing with the application, the application reference number and the date by which we should make a decision on the application.
STEP 3 - Consultation
Details of the application will be published so that local people are made aware of the proposals. It also provides an opportunity for people to comment on how they think the proposed development might affect them or the character of the area. This publicity can take the form of letters, planning lists, site notices, adverts in the local press and the website. Consultations will also take place with the statutory agencies, utility companies and other council departments.
STEP 4 - Decision
As a guideline, the council should decide your application within eight weeks. If it cannot do so, it will usually seek your written consent to extend the period. If, after the end of the eight week period, you have not heard from the council either giving/refusing consent or asking for an extension, you can appeal to the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions. But appeals can take several months to decide and it may be quicker to reach agreement with the council.
Refusal of permission
The council must give reasons when refusing planning permission or imposing conditions. Council staff will be happy to explain these reasons or conditions if they are not clear. It is probably worth discussing with the council whether making changes to your plans will affect the outcome of the application.
Step 5 - Appeals
If you think your application has been unfairly treated by the council, you can make an appeal to the Secretary of State. Any appeals must be made within six months of the date of the council's notice of decision.
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