How a planning decision is made

Find out what happens after you have submitted your application.

Decisions made under delegated powers

Most applications (about 96%) are decided under 'delegated powers' (the authority to decide the application has been delegated by the planning committee to specified senior officers). 

This is usually for smaller-scale proposals -  alterations and small extensions, conversions, straightforward changes of use and new housing developments of up to 9 units. The council's constitution, under its scheme of delegation for planning applications, says when an application will be decided on by officers or by the committee.

The case officer for your application should advise of how your application will be dealt with before a decision is made.

Decisions by planning committee

The Planning Committee, is made up of councillors from all political parties represented on the council and make planning decisions on the council's behalf. The council's constitution contains a Protocol for Members (PDF 112KBb) regarding planning applications.The planning committee, which meets every 3 weeks, deals with decisions that cannot be decided under delegated powers, like:

  • applications for 10 or more units of housing
  • applications where there are 5 or more individual letters of objections if the recommendation is to approve, or if there are 5 or more individual letters of support if the recommendation is for refusal
  • applications where the ward councillor, Conservation Advisory Group or the Disabled Access Advisory Group do not agree with the recommendation of officers, and request the Planning Committee to make the decision