Types of applications and approvals

There are a number of permissions which may be needed in order for a project to proceed. These cover whether the proposed use of the land or building is acceptable, whether it is proposed to be constructed to a proper standard and whether special consideration needs to be given to particular features of the development or its particular impacts. The most important step is to investigate the local planning policy towards the proposed use of the site or building that is part of the project. This is done by looking at both the local plan (which will be found online or by a visit to the relevant planning authority office by appointment) and talking to the local planning authority. The local plan is a major determinant of whether a planning approval is likely and should be consulted before making an application.

The main types of permission that may be required will depend on the proposed project site or building but a list of the types of permission that may be required can be found here.

Some kinds of activities may need other types of licence or consent which will need particular attention and expertise. For example activities such as extracting water from a borehole or river, tree felling, broadcasting, sale of alcohol, gambling etc.

In addition to these permissions all building works will require Building Regulations approval – this is needed to ensure that they constructed to the regulations’ standards. Those making an application can appoint their own approved inspector or the local authority building control department. Building regulation approval has separate requirements and fees. The local authority relevant to the project can provide the details.

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