If you are concerned about a development which you think does not have planning permission you can report it to us in any of the following ways:

We will be happy to discuss your query over the telephone but we do require all complaints to be submitted in writing in order for us to investigate them.

If you are reporting unauthorised work to a listed building or a protected tree that is happening right now, please call 01509 634 722 so we can give the matter a priority response.

(Please note, we are unable to get involved with or offer advice on boundary disputes as these are private / civil matters and not a planning consideration).

Arrangements for Lockdown

In light of the requirements to reduce contact and only travel or go out for essential journeys we must request that all complaints made to the Council in relation to suspected breaches of planning control are accompanied by as much information as possible. Please see the list of information that will be required for Officers to deal with your complaint:

Planning Enforcement Enquiries

Due to reduced capacity and an increase in the number of complaints being received by the Council further information relating to your enquiry will need to be provided before our investigations into the matter can commence.  This information will enable us to prioritise cases to ensure that those causing immediate harm are dealt with as a priority.

Please read the Council’s Planning Enforcement Plan

If your enquiry relates to any of the matters detailed below, please provide the additional information detailed below the relevant enquiry;

Untidy gardens/properties

  • Please provide photographs of the areas of concern, the photographs should also detail the property within the context of the street and/or neighbouring properties
  • Confirm how long the condition of the land has been of concern
  • State the owner/occupier details if known or any back ground information you feel may be useful. 

Business activities from a residential property

  • What business is being run from the property
  • Confirm the business name (if known)
  • Confirm how long the business has been run from the property
  • Confirm if employees are observed visiting the property, if so, confirm numbers of employees and when they generally visit the property, including frequency over a normal week
  • Confirm if customers visit the property, if so detail numbers of customers that visit the property and the average time they are observed at the property over a normal week
  • Explain your reasons for submitting your enquiry (i.e. what harm do the business activities cause you? noise, smell, disturbance etc.)
  • If the business relates to vehicle repairs or vehicle sales please provide vehicle registrations of the vehicles being sold or worked upon, including dates and times of observations over a 7 day period
  • Confirm if the business creates additional vehicles at the property, if so confirm numbers of vehicles connected with the business


  • Please provide a photograph of the advertisement.  
  • If contact details on the advertisement are not clear in the photograph provided, provide all contact details in writing 
  • If it is a remote to let/for sale board – have you contacted the estate agent on the board to make them aware of your concerns and request it be removed?

Built development – fences, patios, decking, driveways, extensions

  • Please provide photographs of the development you are concerned about
  • Provide any dimensions (width, depth, height) you can gather in relation to the development
  • Detail your full concerns regarding the development, including the harm that the development is causing you

Once the above information has been provided an acknowledgment letter will be sent to you which will detail the officer assigned to the case and the reference number for the case which should then be used in any correspondence with the Council.

Any information that you provide will be kept confidential and not disclosed to any other parties.

What we will need to know

Please note that we do not accept anonymous complaints. All reports must be accompanied by details of the person making the report. When reporting a planning enforcement matter to us, we will need the following information:

  • Your name, address and telephone number and/or email address
  • The address or location in question
  • A full description of the problem (please provide as much detail as possible)

We will keep your details confidential and they will not be disclosed to any third party without your permission. Alternatively, you can report the matter to your borough Councillor, or parish/town council.

What happens next

Investigations will begin straight away and, in some cases, an Enforcement Officer may contact you to confirm the facts. We will aim to confirm the findings of our initial investigation to you within fifteen working days, explaining what action we will take or why we think no action is necessary.

We will try our best to keep you informed, but you can always contact the Officer if you would like an update or have more information. 

If a site visit is considered necessary we will aim to carry this out within ten working days and we will attempt to make contact with the owner/developer to try and understand what has happened and why.

It is important to remember that planning enforcement investigations can sometimes take a number of weeks or even months to conclude. If our investigations show that there has been a breach, there are actions we can, and will, take.

We request that all complaints made to the Council in relation to suspected breaches of planning control are accompanied by as much information as possible. Please see the list of information that will be required for Officers to deal with your complaint.

Last updated: Mon 12th December, 2022 @ 17:07