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How to make a planning application

Before you apply

We recommend that you discuss your proposals with a Planning officer as early as possible in order to:

  • encourage proposals that comply with our planning policies
  • identify and sort out any obvious problems with your proposal before you submit your planning application
  • make sure that your application has all the information and plans that we need to deal with it when it is submitted
  • reduce the need to have more discussions with you after the application is submitted, meaning that your application may be dealt with more quickly 

Please watch our video for more information.

How to arrange a pre-application discussion

You can get in touch with the Planning and Building Standards office by telephone, email, by calling at the office or by letter to arrange a meeting with an officer to discuss your proposal.

We strongly encourage you to send us details of your proposal (with accompanying sketches/draft drawings if possible) before you meet a planning officer. This will help the officer to:

  • see what the main issues may be
  • decide whether to invite other Services to the meeting to give their comments on your proposal (for example, Roads and Transportation or Environmental Services
  • ask these Services for any comments before we meet you

Any meeting with you is likely to be more useful if we have been given details of your proposal before we meet you.

The advice we will give you

At the pre-application discussion we will advise you on:

  • any planning policies, proposals or previous decisions that may be relevant to your proposal (copies of relevant published guidance may be given on request)
  • advice on all relevant planning matters such as design, parking, effect on neighbouring properties
  • any obvious problems with your proposal and, if possible, how they could be overcome
  • advice on the type of information and plans that you should include with your planning application
  • *whether your proposal is likely to get planning permission
  • help (if required) on completing the planning application form, fees and on what will happen to your application after you submit it to us
  • how long it may take before we can make a decision on your application
  • the need for any other permissions that you may need such as a building warrant or roads construction consent

*Please note that any comments that we give you at this point will only be advisory. Your proposal can only be properly assessed and a formal decision made on it after your application is submitted, full consultation has taken place and the public are given the opportunity to comment on the application.

What happens next

If agreed during the discussion, we can give you a written response setting out the main areas of agreement/disagreement. We will tell you of any changes or amendments that should be made to your proposals before you submit your application, or we will advise you if your proposal is likely to be unacceptable and why.

If you then submit an application, please remember to tick the box that asks if you have had any pre-application discussions on the proposal and add the name of the officer involved.

Planning application forms

For planning application forms please see How to make a planning application.

Further information

There is a list of local and statutory development plans that may be helpful when starting your application process.  Please see our development plans.

Council Tax privacy statement

Why we collect information about you

We collect and hold information about you, and those in your household, to administer and collect Council Tax, including assessment of your entitlement to benefits, discounts and/or exemptions. We will comply with the Data Protection Act 1998 and retain your information in accordance with the Act.

We will ask for your contact information and use this to contact you about your Council Tax account..

How we use your information

We will use your information for the administration and collection of Council Tax. We may also use your personal details to help prevent and detect crime and/or when required by law and if necessary share it with other public bodies for those purposes. We will not use your personal details for any other purpose without getting your consent first. You may have been asked to give this additional consent at the time when you originally contacted us, for example in an additional section on an application form.

Sharing your information

We will only share information with other organisations where it is necessary, either to comply with a legal obligation, or where permitted under the Data Protection Act, for example, where sharing is necessary for us to carry out the Council Tax function or if there is a public interest to do so such as the prevention and/or detection of crime (see below). This could include the need to disclose sensitive or confidential information such as medical details to other organisations. We may disclose information when necessary to prevent risk of harm to an individual.

At no time will your information be passed to external organisations for marketing or sales purposes or for any commercial use without first getting your consent.

We participate in anti-fraud data matching exercises carried out by other agencies such as the National Fraud Initiative (operated on behalf of Audit Scotland) and the Housing Benefit Matching Service (conducted on behalf of the Department for Work and Pensions). We have a duty to manage public funds properly. As a result, we will use the information you provide to make sure all amounts we are owed are paid on time (for example, by identifying people who have not paid Council Tax and to help people who are entitled to benefits to claim them).

We may also share your information with debt management organisations engaged by us and the courts in relation to outstanding money owed. We may also share your information for the same purposes with other public organisations, including neighbouring councils that handle public funds, and with the police. We may also share your details with other organisations, including credit reference agencies, to help prevent and detect fraud and to confirm who is resident at an address.


Where external contractors are appointed to process information on our behalf, there are contracts which require them to keep personal information safe and prohibits them from doing anything with your personal data other than following our instructions.

Statistics and reports

We may use your information (and the occupier’s if different) for related audit, statistics or management information. Personal details will not be used to identify you (and/or the occupier if different) in any reports or analysis or shared with other parts of the council or anyone else. The Council is the data controller for the purpose of the Data Protection Act 1998. The Council’s Privacy Policy sets out the high level principles we operate to in using people's personal data.

Last updated 27 January, 2017