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Development control

The Meaning of Development

Section 55 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 defines the meaning of development for which planning permission is required:

"The carrying out of building, engineering, mining or other operations in, on, over or under land, or the making of any material change in the use of any buildings or other land."

The role of Development Control includes the consideration of applications with respect to planning, advertisements and the preservation of local heritage (listed buildings, conservation areas, and Tree Preservation Orders or TPOs).

Development Control departments within the Local Planning Authority deal with applications relating to development and often liaise with the applicants so as to consider details in relation to potential planning constraints which might have an effect upon a scheme. Development Control teams also provide guidance for developers on how best to build safer places, provide for affordable housing, and specify more detailed elements of the development requirements.

Planning applications are generally complex creating a mountain of paper work which will include a series of technical reports from a number of consultants justifying a scheme is applicable and will thus enhance an area as opposed to impede future prosperity.

All Local Planning Authorities have a legislative duty to carry out development control within their respective borough or district. This will involve the consideration and determination of:

Planning applications (to carry out development or a material change of use)

  • Advertisement applications
  • Listed building applications
  • Local Authority Applications
  • Conservation Area applications
  • Tree Preservation Order applications

It will also involve the defence of Council decisions at appeals and enforcing breaches of the legislation.

A legislative framework controls the way authorities thus regulate changes to the physical environment, processes and determines applications and controls unauthorised developments. It is complex and demanding and it imposes a significant responsibility on all involved. Decisions taken affect the quality of life and have a high public profile.