Planning and building
Duty planner advice service
Duty planner advice service
Get informal advice on some planning issues from our duty planner advice service.
Advice given by the duty planner does not indicate a formal decision by the council. Any views or opinions expressed are given in good faith and to the best of our ability. The opinions are without prejudice to the formal consideration of any planning application.
Before you start
The Planning Portal includes information and interactive guides on extensions, loft and basement conversions, conservatories, outbuildings, self-build homes and greener homes – details on what you can build without planning permission.
What advice you can get
The duty planner will be able to help you by:
- Explaining national and local planning policy and processes
- Giving general advice on permitted development rights
- Explaining application drawings on current planning applications but no opinion can be given on the merits of an application
- Discussing planning policies or constraints that could affect an application such as being in the green belt or in a conservation area
The duty planner will not be available to:
- Provide an opinion on whether planning permission would or would not be granted – apply for our pre-application advice for this service
- Provide updates on current applications – Provide updates on current applications – Officers are unable to provide progress updates or advise of the likely outcome of the application during the course of the application. If you have not heard from the case officer after the Statutory Deadline stated on the validation letter (8 weeks for most applications) then please get in contact.
- Advise neighbouring residents on what they should or should not object to – whilst Officer’s can explain application drawings, they are unable to advise you on any potential impacts on your property.
- Discuss the technical merits of applications, refusals or appeals -any discussions following a refusal, changes to an approved scheme or regarding information necessary to discharge conditions should be done by applying for post-application advice.
- Agree to minor amendments to planning permissions
- Determine whether planning permission is required for a proposal – use the Planning Portal to apply for a lawful development certificate
- Accept complaints against an alleged breach of planning permission – you can report a planning breach online to our planning enforcement team
- Discuss ongoing planning enforcement enquiries with our Planning Enforcement Team – Officers will update interested parties regarding any key actions or decisions taken (such as closure of the case, or when enforcement action has been taken).
- Provide updates on the Epping Forest Special Area of Conservation (EFSAC)
- Answer building regulations enquiries
Telephone the duty planner
Our duty planner is available between 9am to 11.30am Tuesday to Thursday, except bank holidays. Our customer contact centre will put you through to our duty planner
If the duty planner is busy leave a voicemail message including your name, telephone number, short details of what you wish to discuss, and the address to which this relates and we will call you within 24 hours. Failure to leave sufficient information may result in no call back.
- Call 01992 564000