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Planning permission advice for householders

Do I need planning permission, what is permitted development?

Some alterations to your home, for example:

  • Extensions
  • Dormers / roof alterations
  • Outbuildings
  • Hard surfaces / decking
  • Boundary treatments
  • Solar panels

might not need planning permission and could be carried out as a permitted development, if they satisfy certain limits and conditions.

Planning Portal

The Planning Portal

The Planning Portal is a interactive website with detailed information and examples of everything you may want to modify within your home - along with advice on if you need permission and how to apply for planning permission.

The Planning Portal also provides advice about Building Regulations or you can contact Building control.

Properties that do not have permitted development rights

Apartments, maisonettes and flats (including 'Tyneside flats') do not have the same permitted development rights as houses and you can find out more using The Planning Portal.

The council also has the power to withdraw permitted development rights and there are two types of situation where this may happen:

  • Where the character of an area, such as a conservation area, would be threatened by permitted developments, the council can issue an 'Article 4 direction'. These affect a number of properties in the Cleadon, Westoe, Whitburn, East Boldon and West Boldon conservation areas.
  • On modern housing estates where extensions or alterations could have an adverse impact on neighbours, the council may have removed permitted development rights when the estate was granted planning permission.  If the estate has open plan front gardens, permitted development rights to provide boundary treatments may also have been withdrawn in this way.

You can use these documents to see if your property might be affected:

Please note that if your property is included within either document, you will need to contact us to find out more details about what permitted development restrictions are in place.

When will I need planning permission?

If your proposed development does not fall within the scope of permitted development, or if your permitted development rights have been removed, as described above, planning permission will be required.

You can find how to apply for planning permission at householder planning applications.

If you are interested in what may be relevant to the assessment of a planning application we recommend you look at SPD9: Householder Developments (Revised Jan.2014)4.42MB.

Other consents you might need

Even if you do not need planning permission or building regulation approval you might need some other form of consent from the council.  This might include:

  • Dropped kerb access and footway crossovers - you need to get approval to create or extend a dropped kerb or footway crossover.
  • Listed building consent - you will need consent if you want to extend or alter a listed building in a manner that would affect its character as a building of special architectural or historic interest, or to demolish a listed building. Special rules also apply to buildings and structures within the grounds of a listed building and to gates, fences, walls and other enclosures surrounding a listed building.  Further guidance can be found at Conservation.
  • Demolition in a conservation area - special rules apply to the demolition of certain buildings and walls in conservation areas.  Further guidance can be found at Conservation.
  • Trees - many trees are protected by Tree Preservation Orders and trees in conservation areas are also protected.

Below are examples of other types of private interests that you may need to deal with before you start work:

  • A release of a covenant, which may be included in your properties deeds.
  • Permission from any relevant land owner, this may even include something as simple as eaves and guttering overhanging a boundary.
  • Complying with the needs of the The Party Wall etc. Act.

Householder Enquiry Service

Whilst we recommend that you use the Planning Portal in the first instance, you can use this discretionary service for a fee of £52 (includes VAT) to check if your proposal can be carried out as a permitted development (and if you need to follow the neighbour consultation scheme for larger single storey rear extensions and which cannot be used retrospectively) or if you would need to apply for planning permission. 

To use this service please complete the Householder planning enquiry form168.84KB and return it with the fee.  Cheques can be made payable to South Tyneside Council or alternatively you can call us on 0191 424 7421 and pay using a debit card.

We aim to reply within 28 days, from receipt of the form and fee.

As an alternative to this discretionary service it is possible to apply for a Lawful Development Certificate and more about this process can be found at:

Service limitations

The householder enquiry service is not available for work that you have already started or completed and does not provide provide advice about:

All requests for advice are potentially subject to disclosure in response to Freedom of Information or Environmental Information Regulations requests. Confidentiality cannot therefore be guaranteed when using the service.

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