Pre-application advice service


Temporary Changes to the Pre-Application Advice Service

The pre-application advice service has been suspended until mid-November 2020. Due to the impact of Covid-19 we are not able to reinstate the pre-application advice service at this time. We have a backlog of planning application that must be determined and due to the impact on resources, we cannot provide the full pre-application service at this time. .

Customer and Business Support Team Advisors will continue to offer advice on whether planning permission is required. The advisors will also signpost enquirers to the planning advice available on the website including validation guidance, planning policies, the Design Guide and other supplementary planning policy documents.

The Development Management Service will continue to offer chargeable pre-application advice submitted for works related to:

  • Grade 1 listed properties
  • Grade 2* listed properties
  • Major development (whether development is ‘major’ will be determined by the decision maker)

Advice from Planning Officers for all other categories will be suspended until mid-November 2020.

The fee schedule details the cost of the pre-application advice that will be provided during this period.

Information is available from the Authority that can be accessed to provide guidance on whether permission is required, what needs to be submitted with an application and what policies may be applicable to a proposed development.

How does it work?

  1. Please contact our customer service team in the first instance. You can telephone 01629 816 200 or email
  2. The customer service team will register your enquiry and may be able to give you the information you need immediately
  3. If your enquiry requires further research, you will be referred to a planning customer adviser who will contact you within three working days
  4. The planning customer adviser may decide that further research or information is required at this stage, and if the proposal falls within the categories of the pre-application service being provided, you may be asked to complete a pre-application advice form. We will provide you with Guidance Notes and details of the appropriate fee for your enquiry. Upon receipt of a completed form and the correct fee your enquiry will be allocated to a planning officer who will contact you within 25 working days.
  5. If planning permission is required, we will advise you:
    1. how to submit an application
    2. the type of application that you need to submit
    3. how much it will cost

Will my application be approved?

The pre-application advice that we provide is not legally binding as it does not take into account the views of neighbours, local councils and other public bodies, who we have a statutory requirement to consult.

Final decisions can only be made once an application has been formally submitted and all interested parties have been consulted. Our officers cannot give any guarantees about a decision that will be made on your application.


As a matter of course, requests for pre-application advice will not automatically be treated on a confidential basis. Whilst we will not seek to publicise requests for pre-application advice, there may be occasions when this information is shared with others (which could include councillors and/or third parties).

The Freedom of Information Act 2000 requires us to make certain documents available to members of the public, if requested.

Pre-application advice may only be treated as confidential if there are clear demonstrable issues of commercial sensitivity or other significant reasons why this information may not be disclosed and a public interest test may be applied. Any enquiry in this category should be clearly marked as confidential giving reasons.

If a planning application is made as a result of pre-application advice, all documentation may be publicly available, as they will form background papers to the application.

Share this page