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Planning enforcement

If you know someone that has carried out development without planning permission, we may be able to take action against them.

When we can take action

Enforcement action can be taken in response to:

  • unauthorised building works
  • unauthorised changes of use
  • unauthorised advertisements
  • non-compliance with conditions on an existing planning permission
  • untidy land

What we need from you

When making a complaint we'll ask you to give us full contact details and describe the nature of the problem to us. We keep personal details of complainants confidential where we are able to do so acting in accordance with our responsibilities and legislation.

E-mail us with details Or

Next steps

We will acknowledge your complaint within 3 working days and keep you informed of the progress of our investigations.

When considering the complaint, we'll decide if there has been a breach of planning control, and if there has, whether this is unacceptable and/or harmful to public interest. We then decide if the matter can be satisfactorily resolved through negotiation or whether we need to take further action.

Enforcement notices

If we do need to take further action, we may issues an enforcement notice.

This sets out what the breach of planning control is, the reasons for taking enforcement action, the steps required to resolve the breach of planning control and the period of time for compliance with the notice.

Once served, there is a period of 4-6 weeks before the notice takes effect and during this time anyone who has been served with a copy of the notice has the right of appeal to the Secretary of State.
Failure to comply with an enforcement notice can result in prosecution at court and potentially a fine of up to £20,000.

Read more about planning enforcement on GOV.UK