Make Your Planning Application Valid
We can only progress applications that are valid/complete. "Valid" means that all the relevant information specified in the checklist for each application type must be provided in full at the start of the process, and to an acceptable quality.
Consultation on new Validation Checklist
We are currently (June to August 2021) consulting on a Validation Checklist to help understand which documents are required to be submitted to support the various types of applications. More information is available on our Validation Checklist Consultation page.
Many applications submitted to us are incomplete and this slows up their progress and can cost the applicant more money. The top five reasons for an invalid application are as follows:
1. Missing documents
Look at our validation guidance and our Get Things Right leaflet.
Use the application checklists.
The design and access statement is a particularly common cause of invalid applications. Please look at the design and planning page to see if your application needs one and to make sure it covers all the right areas of information.
2. Getting the basics right
This typically involves unsigned forms and certificates, as well as inconsistent application addresses. Examples of acceptable plans are shown in the Get Things Right leaflet.
3. Incorrect fees
This is a very common reason. These make up around one fifth of invalid applications. Please ensure that you have checked to pay the correct fee. We have currently suspended payment by cheque, for all other options please visit our methods of payment page.
4. Inconsistent plans
Inconsistency between elevations and floor plans can be a major stumbling block, so it is worthwhile ensuring that plans are consistent throughout.
See example plans shown in the Get Things Right leaflet below.
5. Missing red line
A red line outlining all land necessary to carry out the proposed development is required on site location plans.
Examples of acceptable plans are shown in the Get Things Right leaflet.
We strive to be flexible when dealing with planning applications, but we have to operate within national guidelines and rules. We therefore need enough information to assess each application carefully, and through following these five points your chances of a speedy decision increase greatly.
Householder Validation Guidance and Checklist
We have produced the useful advice note for householder applications (for works to one house, such as extension or new outbuilding): Applying for Planning Permission? Get it right first time [pdf] 1138KB, which explains the type of information required for these types of applications.
Other Current Validation Checklists
Please note that all information you provide on the application form and in any accompanying documents will normally be published on the council's website. Only the applicant's personal details, such as telephone and email contact details, and signatures, will be routinely blanked out.
If you wish to provide information in support of the application which you regard as sensitive or confidential, and which you do not wish to be published as set out above, this must be submitted as a separate document and clearly marked as such. Such information should not be embedded within larger documents where it will be more difficult to identify. You should include with any such separate document an explanation as to why you do not wish the document to be published. The council will consider the request and may need to contact you further regarding the request.