Pre-application advice

From April 2019 the council will be changing the way it delivers pre-application advice. From that date the advice will be offered on a charged-for basis to agents, developers and members of the public, whilst still offering free general advice over the telephone. Delivering a quality pre-application advice service is a key element of the overall planning service. The charges for delivering the service covers the time and effort spent by officers in formulating the advice and opinions and is in accordance with the guidance in the National Planning Policy Guidance (NPPG) and section 93 of the Local Government Act 2003.

We want to promote early discussions with agents and developers as part of our development management service. Open and constructive discussions about schemes before they are formally submitted as a planning application can help steer proposals into a form that are more likely to be acceptable to the Local Planning Authority whilst leading to the re-working or dropping of proposals that appear to be fundamentally unacceptable.

Entering into pre-application discussions will help save time, avoid wasted expense and avoid frustration. Whilst more complex proposals or those requiring a site visit or meeting may take longer to assess, it is generally expected that we will be able to reply to a simple query within 2 weeks of its receipt. However, for more complex queries, or those received at times of particularly high workloads, it may take up to 3 – 4 weeks from the date of receipt to provide a reply. Where a meeting is requested this will normally be held within 28 days of the written request with the response to follow.

Further benefits include:
• Avoiding invalid applications that cannot be registered
• Reducing the number of unsuccessful applications
• Raising the quality of development
• Securing satisfaction with the process
• Reducing confrontation in the planning process
• It can give a greater degree of certainty of whether your application is likely to be successful.
• An application received following proper and full pre-application engagement is likely to be dealt with quicker through to a decision.

We expect that guidance given by our officers is taken into account in the preparation and working up of your proposals. Where it is evident that pre application advice has not been sought or taken into account in a subsequent planning application, we may not be able to negotiate on a scheme and applications are likely to be determined as submitted.

Pre-application discussions are always confidential unless you request that we seek the views of third parties. Although the Council does not automatically publicise the details of pre-application discussions, under the Freedom of Information Act we may from time to time receive requests to provide information regarding enquiries for pre-application advice and of any advice given. Subject to certain exemptions, we are obliged to provide this information, although personal details are protected under the Data Protection Act and will be redacted before disclosure.

The Council offers advice on schemes varying from simple household extensions to development of multiple houses with the cost of the advice proportionate to the amount of work that will need to be undertaken. (See Fee Sheet).

If a meeting is required then prior to this the case officer will undertake a preliminary assessment of the proposal against current national and local planning policy, check the site history and identify any likely constraints. If requested a meeting will then take place at the Council’s offices to discuss the scheme.

The advice provided will follow from the case officer fully researching the history of the site and assessing the prospective application against Council policies and standards. Typically the response will include an assessment of the site as existing, a summary of the relevant policies against which any application would be assessed, an assessment of whether the principle of the proposed development is acceptable and details of the issues that the Local Authority will consider if a planning application is submitted, this could include the design and visual impact, amenity, drainage, highways, ecology and planning obligations. Critically following this assessment a summary of the merits of development will be provided, this summary will outline if the development is one that can be supported or not in principle, and then will provide guidance on whether or not in its submitted form it is acceptable or whether or not amendments are required to get Officers support.

The written response will make it clear that any views or opinions expressed are given in good faith, without prejudice to the formal consideration of any planning application, and it shall also be made clear that subsequent alterations to local and national planning policies might affect the advice given and may affect the consideration of any applications, particularly if applications are submitted some length of time after pre-application discussions take place.

The advice that we give at the pre-application stage is given in good faith but it is not the binding on the Council. This is because there may be new information that comes to light during the consideration of a subsequent planning application where we have a duty to consult third parties. Also, some planning applications, such as Major applications or where the Parish Council object are decided by the Development Control Committee rather than by Council officers under delegated powers.

When appropriate the case officer will consult with other officers that work at the Council such as the Tree Officer, Conservation Officer and Landscape Officer. However the advice will be issued without the benefit of any formal responses from external statutory consultees concerning issues including, but not limited to, flood risk, ecology and highways. The response will however include a list of documents required to validate an application such as a Flood Risk Assessment, Ecology surveys or Transport Assessments which the external consultees will need in order to provide a response to the planning application.

To give you greater certainty of outcome from the pre-application process and ensure constructive advice we need you to provide a minimum level of information that will help us with your proposal. The more information you provide the more comprehensive our reply will be.
Customers using the pre-application service are advised to use the online form where the necessary information can be provided, plans and documents can be uploaded and the correct fee paid. Before you submit the form you should be aware that you will need the following information to complete it;
• a detailed description of the proposal
• details of current use(s)
• a plan identifying the location and extent/size of the site
• draft plans of the proposed development where applicable showing height and scale of development.
• photographs may also be submitted if these assist in illustrating the proposed development

Enquiries will also be accepted by email to planning@fylde.gov.uk and via post however if submitted this way the above will need to be provided to make the enquiry valid and also the fee will need to be paid over the phone.

We provide a general level of advice to members of the public about the planning process without the need to pay a fee. For example, to explain what planning policies would apply to a property or area such as if a site is in the countryside or within a settlement, how to submit a planning application, how the planning process works and what issues would normally be taken into account when a planning application is decided. Much of this advice is also available from the Planning Portal website.

This advice will be given by our duty planning officer who is available between 9:30am and 16:00pm and can be contacted on 01253 658435 or emailing planning@fylde.gov.uk.

If you want to work out whether planning permission is required please go to the do I need planning permission section of this website. The Planning Portal web-site has useful tools including an interactive house which allows you to identify whether planning permission is required or not for house extensions.

From 1 April 2019, the relevant fee below will be payable in advance.

With the exception of householder enquiries (unless specifically paid for), the enquirer will receive at least one meeting and a written response if required. The intention of the pre-application system is, however, to guide applicants through the entire process on a fixed-fee basis (i.e. there will be no further charge for follow up meetings, exchange of correspondence etc. as part of the same pre-app).

Type of enquiryCharge
1. Large Scale Major Development
• Residential development of 200 dwellings or more (including changes of use).
• All forms of development on sites of 10 hectares or more.
• Non-residential development with a floorspace of 10,000 square metres or more (including changes of use).
£1,000
2. Significant Major Development
• Residential development of between 50 and 199 dwellings (including changes of use).
• All forms of development on sites between 5 and 10 hectares.
• Non-residential development with a floorspace between 2,500 and 10,000 square metres (including changes of use).
£750
3. Small Scale Major Development
• Residential development of between 10 and 49 dwellings (including changes of use).
• All forms of development on sites between 1 and 5 hectares.
• Non-residential development with a floorspace between 1,000 and 2,500 square metres (including changes of use).
£500
4. Minor Development (A)
• Residential development of between 5 and 9 dwellings (including changes of use).
• All forms of development on sites between 0.5 hectares and 1 hectare.
• Non-residential development with a floorspace between 500 square metres and 1,000 square metres (including changes of use).
£350
4. Minor Development (B)
• Residential development of 4 dwellings or less (including changes of use).
• All forms of development on sites under 0.5 hectares.
• Non-residential development that creates additional floorspace of under 500 square metres (including changes of use).
£250
6. Householder Development
Any extension or alteration to a dwellinghouse, including development within its curtilage (except where this falls into another category).
Householder Development Written advice£50
Apply
Householder Development Meeting£100
Apply

No charge is payable for the following enquiries:

  • Permitted development enquiries – verbal advice only through the duty officer. If written confirmation is required, a Certificate of Lawful Development will be required.
  • Applications for prior approval.
  • Commercial alterations where no additional floorspace is created (e.g. shop fronts).
  • Works to listed buildings.
  • Advertisements.
  • Extensions/alterations to a dwellinghouse required to meet disabled needs.

 N.B. The fees above do not include any additional charges that may be levied by other external consultees who have adopted their own pre-application charging schedules (e.g. The Environment Agency, Natural England etc.). If applicants wish to engage with these bodies separately, they may need to pay additional charges to obtain the advice of the relevant organisation independently of the Council’s pre-application advice procedure.

All prices are inclusive of VAT. Where a development falls into multiple categories, the highest fee applicable will be charged. Initial charges will be levied on the basis of what is proposed as part of the original enquiry. There will be no refund of fees in cases where schemes of a reduced size are negotiated during the pre-application process. If, however, a larger scheme than originally applied for is proposed during the pre-app, then the Council reserves the right to apply any uplift in charges, or to require a new pre-app, at its ultimate discretion.

Apply for pre-application advice

Any extension or alteration to a dwellinghouse, including development within its curtilage (except where this falls another category)

Choose an option below to make a minor development application.

Minor Development (A)

• Residential development of between 5 and 9 dwellings (including changes of use).
• All forms of development on sites between 0.5 hectares and 1 hectare.
• Non-residential development with a floorspace between 500 square metres and 1,000 square metres (including changes of use).

Minor Development (B)

• Residential development of 4 dwellings or less (including changes of use).
• All forms of development on sites under 0.5 hectares.
• Non-residential development that creates additional floorspace of under 500 square metres (including changes of use).

Choose an option below to make a major development application.

Large Scale Major Development

• Residential development of 200 dwellings or more (including changes of use).
• All forms of development on sites of 10 hectares or more.
• Non-residential development with a floorspace of 10,000 square metres or more (including changes of use).

Significant Major Development

• Residential development of between 50 and 199 dwellings (including changes of use).
• All forms of development on sites between 5 and 10 hectares.
• Non-residential development with a floorspace between 2,500 and 10,000 square metres (including changes of use).

Small Scale Major Development

• Residential development of between 10 and 49 dwellings (including changes of use).
• All forms of development on sites between 1 and 5 hectares.
• Non-residential development with a floorspace between 1,000 and 2,500 square metres (including changes of use).