Pre-application planning advice service

Find out about the design panel and other pre-application advice.

About the Planning Team

Our experienced Planning Team give professional advice, before applicants submit a planning application.

This advice is for anyone considering new developments or alterations that may need planning permission or a related consent. 

We're committed to deliver positive planning advice to help you improve your schemes. 

We provide local knowledge and information. This could be on the relevant national and local planning policies and guidance.

We can explain relevant planning history and advise on:

  • the procedure
  • the consultation
  • estimated timescales for your application once submitted

We'll offer informal comments on your scheme without prejudice.

What we can advise on

Alterations to your house or flat

This includes:

  • single or 2 storey extensions
  • loft conversions and extensions
  • porches
  • new and replacement windows - including double glazing
  • walls and fences
  • garages and outbuildings
  • driveways and vehicle crossovers
  • solar panels

Read more about our household pre-application advice service.

Smaller new residential or commercial developments, or changes to commercial premises

This includes:

  • residential developments of less than 10 units
  • commercial developments of less than 1,000 m2 floor space
  • changes of use including houses of multiple occupation (HMOs)
  • prior approval changes of use
  • air conditioning and ventilation systems
  • shopfronts and advertisements

Read more about our minor scheme pre-application advice service.

Alterations which only need listed building consent

This includes:

  • changing roof materials and replacing windows, doors, railings or other features
  • alterations to internal layout, including removal or addition of walls
  • painting or other types of cladding over stone, flint or brickwork or tiling of steps
  • replacing or altering a shop front
  • structural repairs or other repairs not carried out in matching materials
  • fitting domestic flues or new external pipework

Read more about our listed building pre-application advice service.

Major development schemes

This includes:

  • 10 or more units or dwellings of residential accommodation
  • site area exceeding 0.5 hectares where it is not known how many residential units are being created
  • non-residential development of 1000 square metres or more
  • commercial development site area is 1 hectare or more

We offer the DesignPLACE Review (Design Panel) service to all pre-application submissions for major schemes in the city.

Read more about our major development pre-application advice service.

The pre-application service is subject to a fee proportionate to the development proposed and the level of service offered.