Planning Application Guide

If you need to obtain planning permission the following information will help to answer questions you may have during the application process:

How do I submit a planning application?

Applications can be made electronically to the council using thePlanning Portal (opens new window).

Using this method you will be taken through the application process step-by-step and the appropriate application form will be selected automatically.

If a fee is required with your application, this will need to be paid via the Planning Portal website and can be calculated using the Planning Portal Fee Calculator.

We would always recommend that you apply online but if you'd prefer to use the paper forms, you can access them here:Planning Portal Paper Forms (opens new window) Please email your completed form and all supporting documents to

Please be aware that Nutrient Neutrality is affecting the delivery of some developments at this time.  We suggest you review our pages onNutrient Neutrality before making planning applications or submitting requests for pre-application advice.

Can I submit the application myself?

You can submit applications yourself. However, unless you have experience in architectural design and a good understanding of planning policy and construction, it is advised that you employ a qualified architect, surveyor or planning consultant to act as your agent. If your application is straightforward you may be able to do the drawings yourself. However, they must be clear, accurate and drawn to scale. If you use an agent to act on your behalf, all correspondence will be sent to them, including the decision notice.

What do I need to submit?

The Council formally adopted its Local List on Friday 12th April 2024.  The Local List sets out the information that is required, in addition to the National Requirements, to be able to register, assess and determine a planning application. It also provides guidance on the level of information required depending on the size and type of the application.  Therefore, in order to make your application valid, the information contained with the Local List is required in addition to the following National Requirements

  • A completed application form -Make an application on the Planning Portal website (opens new window).
  • The correct application fee. Pleaserefer to the Fees Calculator available on the Planning Portal (opens new window).
  • Plans and Drawings including, but not limited to:
    • Location Plan - This must be to scale and show the application site in relation to the surrounding area.
    • Plans/Drawings - These must be drawn to an identified scale and, in the case of plans, must show the direction of North.
  • Ownership Certificate and Agricultural Land Declaration.
  • Design and Access Statement (where applicable).
  • A Unilateral Undertaking, requiring a one off tariff of £221.17 per dwelling or unit which will pay for recreational impact mitigation measures at Natura 2000 Habitat Sites (The Brecks, North Norfolk Coast and The Broads) as described in the Norfolk Recreation Impact Avoidance Mitigation Strategy. To find out more please visit ourSection 106/Unilateral Undertakings page.
  • A statement setting out if the proposal is subject to BNG or if exempt, the reasons why they believe this is the case (quoting the relevant parts of the Regulations).
  • the pre-development biodiversity value(s), either on the date of application or earlier proposed date (as appropriate).  Where the applicant proposes to use an earlier date, this proposed earlier date and the reasons for proposing that date;
  • the completed metric calculation tool showing the calculations of the pre-development biodiversity value of the onsite habitat on the date of application (or proposed earlier date) including the publication date of the biodiversity metric used to calculate that value;
  • a statement whether activities have been carried out prior to  the date of application (or earlier proposed date), that result in loss of onsite biodiversity value ('degradation'), and where they have:
    • a statement to the effect that these activities have been carried out;
    • the date immediately before these activities were carried out;
    • the pre-development biodiversity value of the onsite habitat on this date;
    • the completed metric calculation tool showing the calculations, and
    • any available supporting evidence of this;
  • a description of any irreplaceable habitat (as set out in column 1 of the Schedule to the Biodiversity Gain Requirements (Irreplaceable Habitat) Regulations 2024) on the land to which the application relates, that exists on the date of application, (or an earlier date); and
  • plan(s), drawn to an identified scale and showing the direction of North, showing onsite habitat existing on the date of application (or earlier proposed date), including any irreplaceable habitat (if applicable).

Further information regarding BNG can be found on our BNG Web Page and also the GOV.UK website including a step by step guide for developers.

The additional validation requirements are set out in the Council's Local List (PDF) [439KB] (opens new window) .

The council has also produced a  guide to the validation of planning applications (PDF) [864KB] (opens new window)  to assist you in submitting applications when additional information is required. 

What happens to my application?

When we receive your application it will be checked by a Validation Officer to ensure we have all the information we need. We will then send you a letter confirming that the application has been validated or a letter requesting further information. Keep this letter safe, it has your planning application reference number on, as well as the date by which a decision should be made. Should you need to contact us, we will ask you for the reference number.

Who will know about my application?

The council must meet certain publicity requirements before a decision can be made, such as:

  • Notifying the town or parish council in which the application site is situated.
  • Informing Ward Representatives.
  • Notifying neighbours immediately adjacent to the site or those that may be affected by the development.
  • Placing a site notice as close to the application site as reasonably possible.
  • Consulting internal and external statutory consultees.
  • Publishing an advert in the local press (EDP).
  • Displaying the application on the council website for public viewing.

For more information on public consultation, please view the  Breckland Statement of Community Involvement (PDF) [624KB] (opens new window) .

How long will my application take?

We have a target for minor and other applications of 8 weeks and 13 weeks for major applications. However, some applications may take longer.

How is a decision made about my application?

A Planning Officer will assess your application, they will then decide whether to recommend the application for approval or refusal taking into consideration any comments received. If your application is straightforward and meets current policies, a delegated decision will be issued. In some cases the application may be decided by thePlanning Committee Meeting Guide.

To view the scheme of delegation please refer to Part 3 of theBreckland Council Constitution (opens new window).

How do I find out what the decision is?

A written notice giving the decision on your application will be sent to your agent, or to you if you don't have one. Decisions will also be displayed on ourSearch Planning and Tree Work Applications page.

Unable to find what you were looking for or have a general enquiry?Contact us with our online form.

Last updated: 12/04/2024 00:01:01