Once a planning application has been registered, it is passed to a planning case officer who will carry out a site visit and consult the relevant interested parties – such as neighbours and statutory bodies.
The suitability of the proposal will be considered with regard to existing planning policies, past planning history of the site and surrounding area, government advice, responses to consultations and any other material considerations.
The planning officer may ask for further information or consideration of certain amendments before finally making a recommendation on whether or not planning permission should be given.
Please be aware that during the current lockdown (beginning 5 November 2020), our ability to undertake site visits in person is limited. This is for the safety of our officers and of the public. Where a Site Notice is due, we’ll be sending this directly to the applicant or agent to put up. You may notice that some of the notices are not in their usual green colour.
If you’d like to make any comments on an application, and to point out anything that you might not be able to show in writing (for example a particular view, a feature, or a part of local character), please send in photos, or perhaps organise a ‘virtual’ site visit or video. This will help the Case Officer to better assess the proposals and any comments you may have.
To calculate planning fees, please use the Planning Portal’s online fee calculator.
- Confirmation of whether planning conditions have been complied with – £116
- Checking the authorised use of premises – £50 (or £85 if a site visit is needed)
- Copy of Planning decision notice – £8
- Copy of Appeal decision – £8
- Copy of Tree Preservation Order – £10
A number of consultations on each application take place before any proposal is decided:
- neighbours living in properties next to an application site are normally consulted – wider notification may be needed for major proposals
- statutory bodies such as the Environment Agency, English Heritage and Natural England
- amenity bodies such as the Victorian Society or RSPB
- internal council consultations such as environmental health for noise, land contamination and pollution or engineers for highway safety
We are required by law to keep a planning register – this has two sections:
- Part 1: copies of each of the applications, together with submitted plans awaiting final determination.
- Part 2:details of each of the determined applications, giving the decision. The register is available for public inspection at the Civic Offices during normal office hours.
- Follow the link to view planning applications online using PublicAccess
Some planning applications require extra publicity and are advertised in the local press each week under the public notices section. These proposals include:
- departures from the Portsmouth City local plan
- conservation areas – proposals which materially affect the character of a conservation area
- listed buildings – applications for alteration or demolition are given added publicity
- major development proposals
- Follow the link to comment on planning applications online using PublicAccess
- You may support or object to an application by writing to the Head of Planning Services at email@example.com
- This correspondence will be taken into consideration when determining the application
If an application goes before the planning committee, you may state views on the proposal to the committee verbally – this is called making a deputation.
Alternatively, any ward councillor that does not sit on the planning committee may speak on behalf of a supporter or objector.
More details on making a deputation can be found in our guidance document section.
The whole decision making process should take about eight weeks to complete, but may take longer where there is local interest or amendments are required.
Planning application decisions fall within three basic categories:
- unconditional permission
- permission subject to conditions
The head of planning services will consider the case officer’s recommendation for minor applications which receive no objections – then issue a decision.
The process varies in other cases:
- If letters of objection to an application are received and the recommendation of the head of planning services is one of approval (provided the application is not contrary to the development plan) a short report will be circulated to all councillors. This will summarise the representations received during the consultation period. Any councillor can then ask that the application be considered by the planning committee. Otherwise it will be determined by the head of planning services under delegated powers. If a request is received during the consultation period expressing a view contrary to the head of planning services recommendation then the matter will be referred to committee.
- If the application is for major development, is controversial, goes against council policy or is the subject of a deputation request which is contrary to the recommendation, then the officer’s recommendation will be considered by the planning committee.
- Shortly after the application has been determined, a decision notice is sent to the applicant or their agent.
- Follow the link to view previous planning committee minutes (including decisions)