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How to respond to planning applications

Please note to comment online you will need a website account. Currently it is not possible to register for a new account. We apologise for any inconvenience caused. If you would like to comment on a planning application but do not currently have an account please email your comments to or see other ways to comment below.

How do I know when an application has been submitted?

Once a planning application has been registered, letters will be sent to immediate neighbours. An immediate neighbour is someone whose property directly adjoins the proposed site. Not someone who lives up the road or opposite. These letters will notify the neighbour of the proposed planning works. If you are a neighbour, the letter will inform you how to provide comments. It will let you know that you have 21 days to comment.  This is known as the 'statutory consultation period'. A decision on the application cannot be made until the 21 day consultation period has passed.  

If you would like to know what applications have been submitted in your area, you can sign up for email alerts.

To set this up, please follow the process below:

  • Log in to your Website Account for planning and click “new search.” If you do not already have Website Account for planning, register for a new account and then access the online planning register
  • Search for applications in the area you are interested in.
  • When the search results come back, click on the "save search" button. 
  •  You will then be asked whether you would like to be notified via email about new search results. Click “yes”.

You can receive various alerts for lots of areas, all you need to do is set up a new search area for each one.

How do I comment on a planning application?

Comment on a planning application online

Anyone can comment on a planning application even if you do not live near to the application site. 

Comments can be submitted up until the date of decision. Any comment received before the decision date will be reviewed by the case officer.

We recommend that you submit your comments as soon as possible. This is so that the case officer can take your opinions into consideration. We want to make sure that the case officer has seen your comments before providing a decision.

You can comment on a planning application online using the online planning register. Using the online register is the quickest and easiest way to comment. If you do not already have an account, you will need to register.

If you are unable to register an account, you can email for help.

If you do not currently have a registered account you will not be able to comment online, you can email with your comments.

We would ask that you try and use the online planning register first and only email if you have a problem.

All comments made towards an application will be published on our website.

Please note that confidential or anonymous comments will not be considered.

You are responsible for your comments and any statements you make. By submitting comments you are agreeing that you will adhere to our website terms of use. You must ensure that your comments are not offensive, harmful or of a personal nature.

If we receive a complaint about a comment on our website, we have a duty of care to review this. If the comment does not adhere to our website terms of use we will consider removing it from our website. We will contact you if we receive a complaint about your comment. We will help you understand why your comment has been removed and how to resubmit your comments.

Any account or comments found to be fraudulent will be removed.

Help commenting online  

The following video shows how to make a comment online. 

Commenting on a pre-application

We do not need comments for Pre-Applications. At this stage the applicant is only seeking advice and not formal consent. If you do send a comment towards a Pre-Application it will not be visible on our website.

When a formal planning application is submitted, our usual consultation process will occur.

What should my comments include?

Your comments should include relevant material planning considerations only. You should try not to include your personal opinion or any neighbour disputes. These are not considered relevant considerations.

Some examples of what is a relevant planning comment are outlined in the table below.  It is important that your comments stick to the points shown on the left hand side of the table.

Issues that are relevant in planning decisions

Relevant considerations

Planning considerations which are not relevant        

  • Local Development Framework
  • Development Plan documents
  • Supplementary planning documents
  • The Statement of Community Involvement
  • The annual monitoring report
  • Government planning guidance
  • The Council’s corporate policies
  • Highway safety and traffic levels
  • Noise, disturbance and smells resulting from the proposed development
  • Design, appearance and layout
  • Conservation of buildings, trees and open land
  • Flood risk
  • Impact on the appearance of the area
  • Effect on the level of daylight and privacy of existing property
  • Need to safeguard the countryside or protected species of plant or animal
  • Planning case law and previous decisions
  • The need for the development
  • The planning history of the site
  • Private property rights such as covenants
  • The developer's identity, morals or motives 
  • Effect on the value of your property
  • Loss of a private view
  • Private neighbour disputes

What about a petition?

If you think a lot of people agree with you about a planning application you can organise a petition.

If you decide to organise a petition, please make sure that:

  • it clearly says the purpose of the petition
  • it gives the reasons why people are supporting or objecting to the application
  • the names and addresses of the people signing the petition can be easily read
  • there is a contact name and address for the person organising the petition

Petitions can support as well as oppose planning proposals and will be published on the Council’s website.

If you are organising the petition you will need to gain signatures from members of the public. All signatures are redacted but names are visible. If you do this, you will need to gain consent from them to be able to submit this as a comment. This is so that we can share their data on our website.  

It is also so that adhere to the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR). By submitting a petition you are agreeing to adhere to our website terms of use.

You can find further information on the Information Commissioner's website.

If it is unclear that you have obtained consent, we will not publish the petition on our website.

What happens after I submit my comments?

The case officer will review all comments towards a planning application. These will be reviewed against the relevant policies and guidelines.

Most applications are decided by a case officer. On occasion a decision will be made by planning committee. This is only under certain circumstances.

Further information can be found via the links below.

We are not able to let you know if a planning application is being reviewed by planning committee. You will need to track the progress of the application by using the online planning register.

You can track the application online for updates. This includes being told when a decision has been made. To do this you need to log into your account, go to the application and then select “track”.

What else can I do?

If you do not wish to contact us direct you can:

Contact your local Councillor. You can speak to your councillor about your views on an application.

Contact your local Council. Parish and Town Councils are aware about planning applications in their area.  If you have an opinion about an application you can tell the local council.

Find out more about the role of local councils in planning.

Do I have a right to appeal if I disagree with the decision?

No, third parties do not have the right to appeal a planning decision. The only person with a right to appeal is the applicant.