We are committed to handling communications electronically wherever possible.
We communicate directly with prospective applicants and others at pre-application stage, and we expect to agree mutually convenient means of exchanging information and advice throughout the process.
How electronic consultation works
Electronic consultation currently happens when a local planning authority consults or notifies us of statutory applications by publishing documents on the local planning authority website and sending us a hyperlink by email. Alternatively we may accept e-consultations via approved third-party websites.
If you are a local planning authority and you wish to e-consult with us directly, please contact the Business Manager in your local office with any queries and/or to agree arrangements for starting electronic consultation.
If you are a local planning authority and you wish to e-consult with us via the Consultee Cloud, please contact the National Business Development Manager.
As a statutory consultee we need sufficient information to give an informed reply (Town and Country Planning (Development Management Procedure) (England) Order 2010).
The guidance below gives a flavour of how we can handle electronic consultations effectively.
If you are a prospective applicant or local planning authority please:
- Send drawings, plans and other complex supporting information in paper form unless agreed otherwise by us
- Provide a clear index with any CD-Rom
When requesting advice electronically please
- Ensure lists of plans and documents make clear the identity of each one by specific naming and indexing
- Provide documents that are scanned at 200 dpi (dots per square inch)
- Ensure the site plan is at an appropriate scale and covers enough of the surrounding area in order for us to locate the site accurately
- In exceptional cases where electronic consultations require email attachments, ensure the attachments are no more than 5 megabytes total size
Broadly speaking, if you are the relevant local planning authority you should:
- Include in each email notification a subject line containing the application reference and site name
- Indicate the reason for consultation and provide in the email the application title and a direct hyperlink to the application and supporting documentation on the website, or a hyperlink to the LPA search engine into which we can paste the application reference
- Ensure supporting documentation has been submitted and is published with the application in accordance with our information requirements, as set out in our Charter.
- If you are a local planning authority and cannot meet our standards for electronic consultation, we may ask for a copy of all the relevant papers you have received from the applicant, to help us to provide an informed response.
- The 21-day deadline will not start until we have received all the information we need to provide an informed response (Town and Country Planning (Development Management Procedure) (England) Order 2010).
- Where a Consultation Notification is received outside our business office hours (9am - 5pm weekdays), it shall be taken to have been received on the next working day; and for this purpose 'working day' means a day which is not a Saturday, Sunday, Bank Holiday or other public holiday. (Town and Country (Development Management Procedure) (England) Order 2010).
- Provide a single email address for each of our Local Offices
- Uphold the standards included in our Charter
- Work with our stakeholders to ensure the effectiveness of electronic consultation