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Objecting to Planning Applications


Are you concerned about your neighbour’s application for planning permission? Are you unsure about the process of objecting the planning application or how best to state your case?

TK Surveying Group receive numerous quires from concerned building owners regarding neighbouring planning proposals and have accordingly written this article to help provide an overview of the process and procedures involved in objecting to planning applications.

Registering an objection

Step 1. Find out more about the proposal.

In the first instance, the local respective local authority will is obliged to notify those parties they feel will be affected by the development. If you have any initial concerns about how the development and approaching your neighbours is not practicable, then you will need to find out more about the project to determine whether an objection is actually relevant. In order to find out more about the planning application you can look at the local authorities planning department website. You can normally explore information about the project including proposed plans, other comments and objections relating to the application.

For those that are not IT savvy, the same information should also be accessible in your local authorities planning department.

Step 2. Consider whether the objections are relevant under planning terms.

There are a number of common mistakes parties make in their submission, in order to ensure that the objection is not deemed frivolous the following lists provide you with a range of typical 'material planning considerations'

Valid Reasons

  • Adequacy of parking/loading/turning

  • Archaeological interest

  • Conservation of nature/habitat

  • Design (appearance and materials)

  • Disabled access

  • Disturbance, noise and smells from proposed use

  • Effect on listed building and conservation area

  • Generation of traffic

  • Impact on trees

  • Landscaping

  • Layout and density of building

  • Local, strategic, regional and national planning policies

  • Loss of light or overshadowing

  • Overlooking & loss of privacy

  • Previous planning decisions (including appeal decisions)

  • Road access and highway safety

  • Visual amenity (but not loss of private view).

Invalid Reasons

  • A perceived loss of value; property price

  • Neighbourly disputes, such as boundary and party wall matters.

  • Personal views and opinions about the applicant

  • Restrictive covenants as per title deeds

  • Right of way disputes

  • The impact of construction work

  • Right to lights dispute (loss of light = planning, right to light = civil matter)

Step 4. Writing the objection

When writing to the planning department it is important to remember that your correspondence should be clear and concise, the following typical of the considerations.

a) Ensure that application number, name and address of the proposed development are prominently located on the letter.

b) Ensure that you objection is clearly noted. e.g. Re: FORMAL OBJECTION

c) Make clear of the 'material planning considerations' you wish to be taken into account.

d) if the 'material planning considerations' include Local, strategic, regional and national planning policies. For each point made an explanation as to why it is relevant and in reference to the relevant policy reference.

e) Include as much supporting evidence as you can to support your points. this can include planning case law and photographic evidence.

f) Don't let your emotions distract your focus and clarity. It is wise to separate any feuds or personal opinion relating to the matter at hand otherwise your submission is likely lose credibility and weaken your submission.

Step 5. Submitting the objection

Submit your objection on time.. The local authority will normally request submission within a certain time frame, whilst late comments may be taken into consideration its best to make your objections known as soon as possible, particularly if your objection is likely to impact a planning decision.

You can send your objection via the local authorities planning department website under the comments section, otherwise, it is fine to either email or post your objection directly to the planning department.

Final Thought. It is important to recognise and tailor your response to a number of factors including localised planning policies which can vary across the Country. These can be found on-line or by contacting your local authority.

Need Help With You Planning Objection?

To ensure the best chance of submitting an planning application objection that carries full merit you can get in touch with a planning consultant to ensure the best chance of success. Feel free to get in touch for impartial no obligation initial consultation.

This article is written for general information purposes only and does not constitute professional or legal advice or guidance.

tksurveyinggroup.co.uk, info@tksurveyinggroup.co.uk, partywallsurveyors, party wall awards, agreements, party wall notices, london party wall surveyors

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