New on-line planning permission ‘checking service’ goes live

3 April 2024

A new free online self-service planning tool has been launched by Tewkesbury Borough Council.

The planning tool enables anyone in Tewkesbury Borough to check whether they are likely to need planning permission for any project they are thinking of developing.

The service is part of a national scheme by the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) to improve resident and landowners’ experience of submitting planning applications.

The new service makes high-level checks against national permitted development rights legislation and uses geographic information system (GIS) data to see if the project may fall under ‘permitted development’. The service also warns if other types of consent, such as prior approval, tree consent or listed building consent may additionally be required.

The service asks applicants questions specific to their project, meaning that users don’t need to be planning experts to start researching the changes they can make to their homes.

Executive Director of Place, Chris Ashman said: ‘‘We’re pleased to offer this user-friendly, online self-service planning tool. Residents can quickly and easily check if their idea for a planning project is likely to be allowed under national permitted development rights or whether it may require planning permission. Anything from a simple project like adding a driveway or solar panels to a roof can be checked.

‘’We know planning has the reputation of being complicated and people may be unsurprised to learn that over a third of applications are stopped at validation. We hope that this tool will help applicants and free up valuable resources within our Planning team – enabling them to dedicate more time to examining projects which require planning permission.’’

This service has been launched as part of the Council’s successful bid for funding from DLUHC’s Planning Software Improvement Fund.

The project is supported by Open Digital Planning, a community of council officers, and digital and technical experts who are working together to design and build the next generation of local government planning services.

Matt Wood-Hill, Head of Digital Planning Software at DLUHC said: ‘’This new scheme aims to make planning simpler for everyone by helping applicants submit the right thing the first time. We’re delighted Tewkesbury Borough Council has progressed this so quickly for their residents. We are continuing to work alongside Tewkesbury and hope to have more services available to the public in the near future.’’

The self-service planning tool is free to use and can be accessed now on the Tewkesbury Borough Council website