Shop Applications

New Shops

Brighton & Hove has a range of designated shopping centres where shops and other town centre uses are encouraged and protected.  See Brighton & Hove’s policies on shopping centres:

See also CP4 Retail Provision [PDF, 30kb] and SA2 Central Brighton [PDF, 149kb] in the Adopted City Plan Part One [PDF, 9MB]

Any proposal in an edge or out of centre location must meet the requirements of national planning policy and national planning guidance. This may involve the applicant demonstrating that the sequential test is met and if the proposal for retail and/or other main town centre uses is over (1,000 sqm net) an impact test (a locally set threshold see policy CP4). Information regarding the remit of the tests can be discussed with the Planning Policy Team via email: 

Further background evidence regarding shopping areas within the city can be found in the Brighton & Hove Retail Study Update 2011 [PDF, 1 MB]The council carries out an annual review of the health of its defined shopping centres and publishes this in its Authority Monitoring Report.

Changes of Use and Shopfronts

The change of use section of the Planning Portal will help you understand whether planning permission is required to change the use of your property and where further guidance on common projects can also be found:

You will need to apply for full planning permission for any alteration to your shop front which would materially change the appearance of the property. This includes replacement shopfronts, installation or replacement or new entrance doors and windows and external security measures.

Small alterations to your shop front may not need planning permission, but the alterations must not materially change the outward appearance of the property.

If the shop is a listed building (or part of a listed building), you will need to apply for listed building consent to carry out any internal or external alterations. Policies HE1 [PDF, 29KB], HE6 [PDF, 45KB] and HE10 [PDF, 29KB] of the Brighton & Hove Local Plan are relevant.

See Brighton & Hove’s polices and guidance for shopfronts:

Advertisements and Signs

If the alterations to your shop front will include adding or changing an advertisement or sign (including lettering on an awning or blind) then you may also need to apply for advertisement consent. Please see our Advertisements section for further guidance.