If a planning application is refused the applicant has a right to appeal the decision.
An appeal should be a last resort. Applicants should contact us in the first instance. We can try to overcome the grounds for refusal and submit a new application.
This link allows you to review determined and current appeals and their status and outcome.
Submitting an appeal
The Planning Inspectorate decide almost all appeals. They also provide information to help you submit your appeal online through their website.
When you can appeal
You can appeal to the Planning Inspectorate if your application was:
- refused permission
- granted permission but with conditions you think are inappropriate
- if the Council failed to approve outline details allowed on Appeal
- if the Council rejected a proposal arising from a condition on a planning permission
- if the Council don't decide your application within the time allowed
- if the Council have told you more information is needed but you do not want to supply it.
It is also possible to appeal against the Council taking enforcement action.
The appeal process
You can submit an appeal within six months (12 weeks for householder applications) of a decision. There are three different ways to deal with it:
- Written representation - this is the most usual way that appeals are dealt with. Each side submits its case in writing and an inspector visits the site. This is the speediest way of getting a decision.
- Informal hearing - this allows cases to be heard verbally, as well as by written submission, during a round table discussion involving:
- the planning inspector
- the appellant
- a planning officer and
- sometimes third parties.
- Public inquiry - this is a formal process with each side presenting evidence to a planning inspector:
- often participants are represented by legal professionals
- witnesses will be cross-examined on their evidence
- third parties may participate.
The planning inspector either:
- allows the appeal (overturns the Council's decision) or
- dismisses the appeal (confirms the Council's decision).
At present third parties (eg neighbours or community groups) have no rights of appeal against planning decisions.
Complaining about applications
If you are unhappy about how the Council has handled:
- a planning application or
- enforcement investigation
you can email the planning department directly: firstname.lastname@example.org or lodge a formal complaint with the Council.
If your complaint is about your planning application decision, then you have the right to appeal. This is set out in your decision notice.
If you have complained and are unhappy with the response, you may refer the matter to the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman (LGSCO). Please note:
- The LGSCO cannot investigate a complaint just because you do not agree with the decision
- They have no power to alter the decision.