Do I need Planning Permission?
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Do I need planning permission?
See links below for householders, business, change of use, conversions, special cases, trees and building projects.
You are likely to need planning permission for new buildings and for major changes to existing properties and the local environment. But for minor changes to buildings, repairs or internal modifications, you probably won’t need planning permission. These changes do not count as ‘development’.
However, minor work on Listed Buildings or work in Conservation Areas is likely to need consent.
In certain circumstances, developments are automatically permitted – this 'permitted development’ does not require consent. The rules on this are set out in the GPDO [67kb pdf]. The sections below summarise the issues and further sources of advice.
Check the 'Permission Needed?' section of the Planning Portal, and look up your project in their list of Common Projects.
Contact Development Control if you do not find what you need.
Householders - sources of information
- Planning Portal's Guidance on common projects.
- See also the mini-guides on
The Portal has an interactive house/terrace for householders, including renewable energy, windows and many other common developments. It also has a volume calculator for calculating the volume of a number of different kinds of buildings or extensions.
View Brighton & Hove's Policies and Guidance for Householder proposals.
Business - sources of information
You also need to check with us if you want to change the use of a building. For more information on this go to our Use Classes and Change of Use page.
See Brighton & Hove's Policies and Guidance for advertisements.
See Brighton & Hove's Policies for Commercial proposals.
'Planning Permission - a Guide for Business' by the Department for Communities and Local Government.
All residential conversions need planning permission. This includes subdividing a residential property to make more residential units, whether it be a house, a house in multiple occupation, a maisonette, or even a flat. Please check our Sustainable Building Design pages for further guidance.
Even if your development seems to be permitted by these rules, it's still important to contact the council’s Development Control team to check that the building or land has not had its permitted development rights removed or limited for some reason. In some cases, there will be special conditions attached to previous development that can restrict these rights.
Brighton & Hove also has Article 4 directions which limit the scope of permitted development rights in 37 areas of the city.
Listed buildings and conservation areas
Some of Brighton & Hove’s older properties are protected from development because of their special architectural or historical interest. Also, parts of the city are designated conservation areas because of their special character and appearance.
Tighter planning controls, including for demolition or partial demolition, apply to both listed buildings and properties in conservation areas. This includes internal works to Listed Buildings.
To find out if your property is protected, check our Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas pages. See also our Policies and Guidance on Listed Buildings and demolition in Conservation Areas.
If your property is affected, you will need to apply for Listed Building Consent or Conservation Area Consent, in addition to your Application for Planning Permission. Find out how to do all this in our guide How to apply for planning permission.
Please contact our Arboricultural Service for any advice on work relating to trees, or if you see tree work taking place which you believe may not be authorised.
Certificate of Lawful Development
If you need to prove to anyone, such as a prospective buyer, that building work you’ve done is lawful, you can apply for a Certificate of Lawful Development.
Difference between Building Regs and Planning permission. Even if your building project does not need planning permission, you will still need to comply with Building Regulations. For more information, go to the Portals' extensive Building Regulations pages or our own Building Control pages.