Making an Application

Three Rivers receives 84% of applications online and we recommend that you make your planning application via the Planning Portal.  Registration is easy and you can complete your application form, upload supporting documents and pay fees online.

Planning Portal.jpg

  • The benefits of applying online include:
  • Immediate delivery and acknowledgement
  • Online help function when completing applications
  • Online payment

If you prefer, you can submit your application along with supporting documents by post or in person:

Via email: 
Via post: Three Rivers House in Rickmansworth.
Payment via phone: 01923 776611 (please note we will no longer be accepting cheques)


In accordance with national guidance published by the Department for Communities and Local Government, Three Rivers District Council has created a list of local requirements for the validation of planning applications.  This has been incorporated into a validation checklist which encompasses national requirements (including the application form, the correct fee, ownership certificates and other specific details) as well as local validation requirements. 

Please note a planning application cannot be processed until all the necessary supporting information and the appropriate fee is received.  

Validation checklist
Application Forms and Fees
Required Plans (pdf)
Buying a Plan
Design and Access Guidance (pdf)
Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL)

Affordable Housing:

Following changes to the National Planning Practice Guidance, with effect from 23 May 2016, financial contributions towards affordable housing were not being sought from developments of 10-units or fewer with a maximum combined gross floorspace of no more than 1,000sqm. However, with regard to evidence the Council will fully re-apply parts (a) and (e) of Core Strategy Policy CP4 when determining all relevant planning applications from 4 SEPTEMBER 2017, and as such, sites delivering one or more dwellings will be required to contribute to affordable housing provision. For more information on the background to this decision see the Core Strategy.

Evidence for affordable housing policy (pdf)

Where a required affordable housing contribution would not be viable, a Viability Assessment / Financial Appraisal must be submitted with any application.  This viability information will be assessed by an independent financial advisor, the cost of which shall be borne by the applicant/developer. These costs are:

9 units or less: £1500 plus VAT

10 or more units: £2000 plus VAT

Large schemes: Fee to be negotiated on an individual basis

Supplementary Planning Documents

Please note that the relevant fee (payable to Three Rivers District Council for inward transmission) must be paid up-front at the time of validation, and must be a separate payment to the planning application fee.

Please note that the Council may be obliged to disclose documents under the Freedom of Information Act and the Environmental Information Regulations and cannot agree to accept documents in confidence or on any basis that restricts its disclosure obligations as a public authority

Energy Statement Requirement:

Policy CP1 of the adopted Core Strategy requires all applications for new residential development of one unit and above and all new commercial development to be accompanied by a CPLAN Energy Statement and Sustainability Checklist to demonstrate the extent to which sustainability principles have been incorporated into the location, design, construction and future use of proposals, and the expected carbon emissions.

The CPLAN Energy Statement and Sustainability Checklist will not be available from 21 March 2016.  From this date, applicants will not be able to submit a CPLAN Energy and Sustainability Statement but should submit an Energy Statement demonstrating the extent to which relevant proposals meet the requirements of Policy DM4 of the Development Management Policies document which sets out that developments must produce at least 5% less carbon dioxide emissions than Building Regulations Part L (2013) requirements having regard to feasibility and viability. For building conversions, development proposals must still demonstrate that there would be an overall improvement in the energy performance of the building. Guidance on producing an Energy Statement is available at Guidance on producing an Energy Statement (pdf).

Drainage Strategy Requirement:

The Government has introduced a requirement for all major development proposals to include Sustainable Drainage Systems (SuDS) and details of drainage would be required as a Drainage Strategy. Guidance on requirements and providing Drainage Strategies is available from Hertfordshire County Council as the Lead Local Flood Authority at

Useful Documents:

Local Biodiversity Checklist (doc)
Draft Unilateral Undertaking/Agreement (doc)
Draft Section 106 Agreement (doc)

Suggested Next Steps