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The Planning Application Process

You may need planning permission to develop your property.  This includes developing land, extending buildings and the change of use of land or buildings. However, some minor developments may be considered to be permitted development and therefore do not require a full planning application.

This section will provide you with information on how the planning process works and is divided into the following sections:

Do you need Planning Permission?

Pre-Application Stage

Making an Application

Planning Committee

Post Application

You may still need other kinds of approvals such as:

Advertisement Consent 
Listed Building Consent   
Herts County Council Drop Kerb Application   
Building Regulations      
Application for Tree Works


Overview of Planning Process:

The planning process will usually take 8 weeks (or 13 weeks for major applications) and will include a site visit by the case officer, consultation with neighbours, statutory bodies and other interested bodies, before a decision is made. However, some applications may go to the Planning Committee which may extend the determination period.

Due to the nature of their work, Case Officers are not available to answer enquires all day. However, if you require technical advice on general planning matters you may Contact Us, or visit the Duty Planning Officer between 10am and 1pm, Monday, Wednesday and Thursday. This service is provided to personal visitors without an appointment and to telephone callers. Please note that this will be for small scale developments/householder only. 

The Customer Service Centre is able to answer most non-technical questions by telephone (8am to 6pm Monday to Friday). However if you require technical advice on general planning matters you may Contact Us or visit the Duty Planning Officer between 10am and 1pm on Monday, Wednesday or Thursday without an appointment.

Planning applications may be viewed at the Council’s Customer Service Centre between 8.30am and 5.30pm (Monday to Thursday) and between 8.30am and 5pm (Fridays), or alternatively, you can views plans online. 

Customer Service Charter (Feb 2017) (pdf)


Planning Aid:

Planning Aid provides free, independent and professional help, advice and support on planning issues to people and communities who cannot afford to hire a planning consultant. Planning Aid complements the work of local authorities but is wholly independent of them.

Planning Aid is part of a charity and is operated through a small team of paid staff and a network of volunteers of qualified Town and Country planners.

Please visit the Planning Aid Website for more information or ring the helpline on 0870 8509801.

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