Determination of planning applications

Planning committees

The Plans Sub-Committee meets fortnightly. The committee consider all types of planning applications, primarily those which fall outside delegated powers or are called in to committee by a councillor. The committee also considers some more contentious enforcement and tree matters. Agendas for planning committee meetings are normally available on our website up to 7 working days prior to the date of the meeting.

The Development Control Committee meets on average once every eight weeks. Committee members consider major or contentious planning applications and other planning issues affecting the Borough. The reports concern a whole range of issues, including service planning, strategic and London-wide issues, planning and transport policy, conservation, and countryside management. Part of the agenda contains items, which, because they relate to legal, or financial or personnel issues, may be confidential and cannot be heard in public.

All committee members are elected councillors. Other councillors can attend the meetings, they are not permitted to vote, but are allowed to speak and give the committee members the benefit of their knowledge. Planning and legal officers attend to give councillors advice. A committee administrator records the minutes.

Members of the public wishing to speak at either committee are advised to read the fact sheet 'Speaking at planning meetings'. You need to register before 10am the day before the meeting if you wish to speak. Applicants and objectors who are interested in applications can also speak to one of their ward councillors before the meeting.

The main part of the agenda is the Chief Planner's report on planning applications. Each application to be considered at the meeting is listed on the agenda and is accompanied by a planning report. The report will include the proposal and location, relevant considerations, including representations made to the proposal, and a conclusion with recommendation. Background documents referred to in reports are available for inspection at the Civic Centre by prior arrangement and on our website 5 working days before the meeting.

 The committee consider each case in an order decided by the Chairman, normally taking cases with public speakers and visiting councillors first. Committee members can ask the planning and legal officers at the meeting for advice if necessary. They then vote. An application for planning permission may be granted and this may be subject to certain conditions. The titles of and reasons for conditions are in a standard and shortened form on the agenda, but are available in full on request. Or, an application may be refused and the reasons for refusal given. Decisions may also be deferred if councillors require more information about a proposal. Occasionally applications are withdrawn from the meeting and are dealt with at a later date.