Planning charter

The full planning charter is available on the attached document. The Key points are outlined below.

Our customers

Customers of the planning service fall under many categories. These can include: those applying for planning permission, those making representations on applications, Town and Parish Councils, the business community, Councillors, other parts of the Council, Statutory Bodies, interest groups, and other organisations interested in planning applications and the local planning process.

Our commitment to you

We aim to provide a friendly, courteous and prompt service and strive to maintain high professional standards. This allows us to make the best possible decisions for local communities.

In particular, we aim to achieve the following general service standards:

  • Answer telephone calls promptly during office hours
  • Respond to telephone messages within one working day when requested
  • Respond to letters and e-mail communications with a full or interim reply within 10 working days
  • Deal fairly with complaints about the service, in accordance with the Council's Complaints procedure
  • Continue to maintain and update the Development Services website to keep users informed about changes to procedures, e.g. legislation and fees

Our aims with regard to specific departments within Development Services are in the full charter available to download at the top of the page

Referring applications to Development Control Committee:

The Council’s constitution contains the rules on what applications are dealt with by officers, and which ones can, on request, be referred to the Development Control Committee.

In short, all applications are determined by officers unless the Chair of the Committee or the Head of Planning feels that it should be referred. The accepted criteria is that the application raises issues that will have an effect beyond the local area.

The Chair of the Committee will accept requests from town and parish councils or the district councillor for that ward.

It should be noted that the Case Officer handling the file merely makes a recommendation to either the Committee or to a panel for peer review. The peer review for most applications will involve at least two principal planners or managers, none of whom have been actively involved in the project.

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