Why Do I Need Planning Permission?
The information on this page explains why we have to apply development regulations and if you are likely to need planning permission for what you want to do. If you need any more information after reading this page, please use the details under the Contacts header.
Why Control Development?
Over 100,000 people live in the 30 square miles of Mansfield District and many more visit to work, to shop or for leisure. Because of this, the way any land or building is designed or used can affect many people. The Council has a legal duty to control development so that land and buildings are used sensibly, for the benefit of the community and the environment.
Some of the benefits of properly controlled development are:
- Ensuring that new houses are connected to roads and sewers, and have shops and schools nearby.
- Keeping noisy or dirty industry away from residential areas.
- Ensuring that new buildings are well laid out and at home with their surroundings,
- Conserving countryside and good farmland.
- Ensuring that the road system can handle new developments
What Needs Planning Permission?
The legal definition of development includes building and engineering operations and changes to the use of and or buildings. This can include building walls, erecting new buildings, alterations and conversions, attachments to buildings (e.g. satellite dishes), new roads or accesses, conversions and demolition. You can use the Planning Portal's Useful Tools page which provides simple to use visual guides, outlining what kinds of household development can take place around your home with or without permission.
However, because the laws governing whether or not planning permission is needed are complicated it is always advisable to ask the Council whether or not you need to apply for permission. We have preliminary enquiry forms available for you to complete, which will make sure you are given the clearest possible answer. Once we have received your form and the appropriate fee we will write back to you saying whether you need to apply for planning permission, or if you are allowed to develop under what is known as 'permitted development'. The charges for this service can be found on our Other Planning and Building Control Charges page
You can download these and all other Planning and Building Control forms by visiting our Planning Forms and Building Regulations Applications Pack pages or you can obtain the relevant forms and guidance by calling at the Civic Centre or telephoning 01623 463077 or 463207.
Planning permission may also be needed for some business premises and businesses working from home. You can find more detailed information about each type of work by visiting our Planning Advice page. There is also advice provided on the Planning Portal's web site on the Do You need Permission page, under the Common Projects section and choosing the Project Type as Business using the drop down arrow.
Calculating Your Fee
To help you in assessing the cost of submitting your application, the Planning Portal provides access to an easy to use on-line Fee Calculator on their Useful Tools page. Alternatively you can use the Fee Sheets on the council's Application Fees page.
It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that the fee submitted is correct. Please contact Technical Support on (01623) 463202, 463207 or 463077 if you need any assistance on what fee is required.
What Is Permitted Development?
To prevent the planning system from being over loaded, the Secretary of State for Communities and local Government is able to grant a blanket planning permission for many minor developments. These permitted developments can include small extensions, walls and fences below certain heights, and domestic outbuildings. The rules are complex and change from time to time and so it is not possible to set them out on this page. However, if you explain what it is you want to do by downloading, completing and sending in our HE1 Enquiry form you will be told if an application is necessary. There is a charge for this service, The charges can be found on our Other Planning and Building Control Charges page, you can expect a reply within 15 working days.
Would I Be Likely To Get Permission?
Having plans drawn up and applying for permission can be time consuming and will cost money, To avoid delay and unnecessary expense please contact the Development Control Service and talk to a Planning Officer first. They may ask you to submit written information or sketches to show what you have in mind. They will then offer their opinion and tell you how to apply for permission or how to alter your proposal to increase the chances of approval. It is important to understand that this advice cannot take the place of a formal planning permission and cannot guarantee that permission would be granted.
What Other Consents Might I Need?
If you intend to extend, alter or demolish a listed building, or part of one, you may need Listed Building Consent, even for internal works and things that do not require planning permission. It is a criminal offence to carry out unauthorized works to a Listed Building, so always check the position with the Council first!
Further advice on Listed Buildings is given in the Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas page. If you intend to demolish any building or wall within a Conservation Area you may need Conservation Area Consent (see below).
Developing Without Planning Permission
If development is carried out without planning permission, or without adhering to the conditions of a planning permission which has been granted, there is danger that it will cause harm to the environment or people's quality of life.
Therefore the Council is committed to investigating reported breaches of planning control and has legal powers to remedy the situation if necessary. In some cases there may have been a genuine belief that planning permission was not needed, in which event an opportunity may be offered to make a retrospective application if there is a likelihood that what has been done will prove acceptable.
However, where the Council feels the situation can only be rectified by the building being taken down or the use being stopped, it will take enforcement action. This will usually be by serving one or more formal notices which say what needs to be done to keep to planning law. Failure to keep to a notice can be an offence which leads to prosecution. Although some rights of appeal do exist, it should be kept in mind that the Council only takes such action in exceptional circumstances where it feels real harm would otherwise occur.
If you feel that something has been done without planning permission, the Council will normally ask you to complete a form so that there is no misunderstanding of the matter which you are complaining about, all complaints are treated in confidence as far as possible. However, anonymous letters or telephone calls are not normally followed up, because experience shows they are often made maliciously. Even if you genuinely feel your quality of life has been affected the Council may not be able to act - just as some people fail to understand that they need planning permission, others may not appreciate that what they are concerned about is perfectly lawful.
Investigations, negotiations and formal action can take a long time, particularly if it is difficult to gather sufficient proof to warrant action. If the Council cannot gather enough evidence you may be asked to help, and this will be treated in confidence as far as possible. However, if your evidence is vital to the success of any action the Council wishes to take, it may be necessary to reveal your identity.
When development is carried out without planning permission or in breach of planning permission, the Council has the power to take legal action to set things right when it believes that this is needed. The Council sees planning enforcement as an important service and will clamp down on those who break the rules. If you have a complaint about a breach of planning permission, write to the Head of Planning, Community Safety and Regulatory Services or contact an Enforcement Officer, their details are under the Contacts header.
Conservation Area Consent
Further advice on Conservation Areas is given on the Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas page, use the link under the Related page header to access this information.
Many trees within the District are protected by conditions attached to planning permissions, or by their inclusion within a Conservation Area or because they are covered by a tree preservation order. You may need permission to cut down or cut back trees which are protected. Certain hedgerows within the District may be protected by a planning condition attached to a planning permission or by the Hedgerows Regulations 1997. You may need to make an application to the local planning authority to remove a hedge and advice should be sought from the local authority before the start of any works of removal. Further advice is given on our Trees and Hedgerows page.
Building Regulations set the standards for design and construction which apply to most new buildings and many alterations to existing buildings in England. Most building work is controlled under the Building Regulations, they aim to ensure that buildings are safe, healthy, accessible and sustainable for current and future generations. When the Regulations apply you have a duty under law to keep to them. If you are doing work controlled by the Building Regulations, protect your interests and insist the work is independently and professionally inspected by Local Authority Building Control.
Mansfield District Council's Building Control Section is manned by professionally qualified and experienced staff who have the local knowledge, technical expertise and the ability to tailor the service to suit your needs. Make them your natural choice.
As well as the supervision of works under Building Regulations, the section also deals with dangerous structures, demolitions, permits for skips, scaffolds and hoardings, street naming and numbering, and provides advice on access and facilities for people with disabilities.
For further information and advice on any of the services provided by Building Control, please go to the Building Control pages, or visit the Building Regulations pages on the Planning Portal's web site .