Report a breach of planning control

Former Portfolio Holder Councillor Hannaford explains how to report planning enforcement

We ask that you help us to deal with your issue as effectively as possible by providing us with as much information as possible. Please follow our steps to reporting issues below:

Have you checked if planning permission is required for the work taking place?

If not, please check using the planning portal website

If planning permission is required, please move to the next step


Have you checked if the location of the work has approved planning permission? 

If not, please check using the online planning register

If planning permission is not granted, or the work is not complying with that permission, please move to the next step


Is the issue regarding any of the following?

- Boundary or ownership disputes
- Party wall issues
- Covenant issues

If so, these are civil matters so please contact citizens advice or seek legal advice 

if not, please move to the next step


  • Contact you by telephone if it seems that your complaint might not be a breach of planning control, or if it appears that we might be able to advise you about a technical breach of planning without a full investigation
  • Aim to acknowledge your complaint within 3 working days
  • Prioritise complaints based on possible risks to the public or the environment. Cases will be considered a higher priority when they are likely to involve the potential for permanent damage to public health and safety or the environment
  • Provide a brief summary of our findings once we have concluded our investigation

It is important to be aware that in the process of us investigating unauthorised development we are guided towards giving the owner, or person carrying out the works, the opportunity to rectify the matter without us taking formal action. In some cases, if the unauthorised development does not cause significant harm, we may take no further action. Often planning enforcement cases are resolved through informal agreement with the people responsible. If negotiation fails to resolve the problem, we have powers to take enforcement action and will use them where it is appropriate to do so.