What's new in Planning

The Development Management Service would like to reassure you that we are working hard to validate applications as quickly as possible.  Due to a very sharp increase in the numbers of  planning application submissions, which has resulted in an equally high demand on officers’ time, this may result in us taking longer to acknowledge applications at present (you will be able to view the average working days currently taken to validate below). 

We would like to thank you for your patience and suggest that you do not contact case officers direct as they are carrying a heavy caseload.  Should you wish to monitor the progress of your application please refer to the Online Planning Register in the first instance, as you will be able to view your application there once it is validated. Any queries prior to validation should be addressed through planning@cornwall.gov.uk or via 0300 1234151.

From 1 January 2019, we will no longer be writing to contributors individually to notify them of dates of Planning Committee. This information is available on our website and can be obtained by tracking applications via the online register.

Where there is a need to submit information considered ‘personal data’ or ‘sensitive personal data’ under the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) this information should be submitted in a separate document without cross-referencing in documents that can be made public, and marked as confidential.

 The definition of ‘personal data’ and ‘Sensitive Personal Data’ can be found on page 8 of Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) Guide to the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and will include for example personal circumstances and health information.

We are currently consulting on revised charges and new services for the Planning and Sustainable Development service. Please see our Consultation on Revised Charges document for full details. Any queries or comments should be emailed by 14th December 2018 to planning@cornwall.gov.uk for the attention of Donna Moore or by post to Planning and Sustainable Development, Pydar House, Truro TR1 1XU

From 1 January 2019, Cornwall Council will be a Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) Charging Authority, and any new development determined after this date could be liable to pay a CIL.  CIL may also be charged on development approved by way of general consent if it commences after 1 January 2019.  Visit www.cornwall.gov.uk/cil now to find out how CIL may affect your development.

9 out of 10 agents submit applications via iApply or the Planning Portal.  If you submit applications via iApply or the Planning Portal your documents automatically drop into our back-office system giving you immediate assurance that the documents have been received. Submitting applications in this way speeds up our processes.

Applications submitted by alternative means such as by email or in hard copy divert resources to other processes that enable the documents to be published on-line, which leads to a delay in those applications being validated.

We would therefore encourage you to continue to submit applications in a way that speeds up the process

The Planning and Sustainable Development Service is in the process of updating its Local Validation List. A draft Validation Guide has been produced (including the local validation list) with the aim of providing applicants and agents with as much information as possible to submit an application ‘right first time’ and avoid any delays at validation or during the planning process.

Main changes include:

  • A single guide for both the public and internal staff.
  • A more concise guide achieved through reducing the amount of duplicated information.
  • Increase in information and guidance achieved through links to useful documents, webpages and guidance
  • More detailed information regarding specific plans with the aim of improving quality

Significant updates have been made with regards to:

  • Contaminated Land
  • Air Quality
  • Noise
  • Odour
  • Affordable Housing
  • Plans

The Draft Validation Guide can be viewed below.

From 6th April 2018 The Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) (England) (Amendment) Order 2018 came into force.

The most notable change for validation is that for new agricultural buildings submitted under a Prior Approval Notification the permitted development size of the building has increased from 465 sq m to upto 1000 sq m; and for extensions under Prior Approval there has been an increase in the cubic content from a maximum of 10% to 20%.

There are also some changes to Class Q Developments.  Information regarding these Class Q changes is to be provided soon, but in the meantime the above link will take you to the 2018 Order should you wish to see what the changes are.

Four new Chief Planning Officer’s Advice Notes were recently published, including one on Planning for Air Quality.  Working with colleagues in our Community and Environmental Protection team this particular Advice Note supports the Clean Air for Cornwall Strategy and Policy 16 of our Local Plan.  It helps provide consistency when making planning decisions that include air quality considerations and helps identify when an air quality assessment is required to support a planning application.  Details of the nine Air Quality Management Areas are provided which can also be viewed on our interactive mapping.  Applicants are encouraged to discuss with the Environmental Protection team where air quality and mitigation measures are relevant to an application at an early stage and take advantage of the ‘Environmental Health – Technical Advice for Planning applicants’ (EH-TAP) service.

Residential annexes are a common form of development that are generally proposed in order to allow relatives to live with their family with a degree of independence.  In many cases, such proposals are considered to be acceptable by the Council.  However, over recent years we have noticed a considerable variation in the approach taken by agents and applicants to submitting planning applications and supporting these with sufficient evidence to ensure that applications do not result in proposals which are effectively the same as creating a new dwelling.  We are now following the guidance set out in the Annexe Guidance Note, revised in February 2018. The guidance does not have the weight of "adopted policy" but is intended to provide consistency in our approach and so that hopefully agents and applicants can do likewise.

The Planning and Sustainable Development Services Fees and Charges document sets out the fees which currently apply until 31 March, 2018. 

A decision has been made to increase discretionary planning fees (see pages 8 – 21 and page 41 to 42 of the above document) by approximately 5%  with effect from 1 April, 2018 (please note that the increase does not apply to Statutory Planning application charges). 

A new interactive map has been created to view areas covered by an Article 4 Direction. Article 4s are used to remove some permitted development rights. The map includes details of each Article 4 and provides a link to a PDF copy of the original Direction. For further details please see Article 4s.

Cornwall Council has produced a Planning Fees and Charges Supplementary Guidance Document, this document is to be read in conjunction with the Fees and Charges Document and provides guidance and clarification with regards to how Cornwall Council interprets the fee regulations. This document is updated regularly and includes information on calculating floor space, holiday lets, buildings and caravans and caravan sites.

(March 2018)

“Following the annual review of our service costs, we would like to inform you that the Building Control fees will be increasing by approximately 5% with effect from 1st April 2018. (Please note: that these increases do not apply to EScosult).

We are, of course, pleased to continue to offer bespoke fee quotes for works that sit outside the scope of our standard charges.”

(February 2018)

Cornwall Council Building Control is an independent, publicly accountable organisation who are part of the national LABC network.

We are a helpful and experienced team of surveyors including specialists in the Fire Risk Assessments and Thermal Energy Assessments with unrivalled local knowledge.

With trusted technical expertise we will guide you through the process of obtaining approval right through to a robust programme of site inspections. We are committed to maintaining the highest standards in the design, approval and construction of buildings no matter how big or small.

To find out why you should choose local authority building control, and keep up-to-date with the latest Building Control news and products please visit Building Control. 

Our Community and Environmental Protection team provides internal consultee responses to planning applications where pollution risks require consideration. Depending upon the situation, this might include air quality, land contamination, noise, and sometimes, even odour - all of which can have significant impacts upon our health, and the environment, and are important considerations when delivering sustainable development.

This is reflected in the Cornwall Local Plan (particularly Policy 16) which seeks to improve the health and wellbeing of Cornwall's communities.

To assist developers and other stakeholders an Environmental Protection - Planning Guidance webpage has been created to provide a single location for useful guidance, standards, and other services offered. The technical nature of considering some forms of pollution can sometimes mean that decisions such as whether to undertake an assessment, the type of assessment to be carried out, and how to approach any issues identified that are not straightforward. This information, and the additional services offered, therefore, has the objective of helping applications to 'get it right first time'.

A Positive Planning webpage has been created to showcase recently completed and successful small scale residential and commercial developments.

If you have any examples that you would like included, please forward the relevant details to the Customer Relations team on: egdcustomerrelations@cornwall.gov.uk

This page will include the latest planning newsletters from our service including building control, neighbourhood plans and positive planning stories.

The service has now put together a set of customer care standards for the services it delivers. We are committed to achieving the targets that we have set out in the Planning and Regeneration Service Customer Care Standards document.

9 out of 10 agents submit applications via I-apply or the Planning Portal.  If you submit applications via I-apply or the Planning Portal your documents automatically drop into our back-office system giving you immediate assurance that the documents have been received. Submitting applications in this way speeds up our processes.

Applications submitted by alternative means such as by email or in hard copy divert resources to other processes that enable the documents to be published on-line, which leads to a delay in those applications being validated.

We would therefore encourage you to continue to submit applications in a way that speeds up the process