Validation process

How long does the process take after an application is submitted?

We will try to validate an application as soon as possible however during busy times  this process can take up to two weeks therefore please only contact us two weeks after your application was submitted.

What happens once an application is received?

  1. We create a file and allocate an application number. This number is your planning application reference and should be quoted whenever you contact us about the application.
  2. The application is allocated to a planning officer.
  3. Once allocated, the planning officer or planning administrator will undertake validation screening to make sure that the application meets national and local validation requirements (we endeavour to make all applications valid as quickly as possible but our requirements must be met).

 If the application is valid

  1. The validation team process the application and send you an acknowledgment letter with a site notice and guidance notes.
  2. The validation team create a list of neighbours to consult (if appropriate). 
  3. Letters are sent to neighbours.
  4. A number of statutory external and internal consultees are contacted for their comments on the application e.g. Thames Water, conservation officers, Environment Agency.
  5. The application is uploaded to our website.
  6. It is then given to the planning officer for assessment and to make a recommendation. It is not possible to keep applicants informed of the progress with an application and we are unable to negotiate or meet to discuss the application generally. We will contact you if we require anything specific to enable determination of the application and you are able to track progress of an application on the website.

If the application is invalid

  1. You will receive an email or letter stating the reasons it is invalid.
  2. The application is then suspended until the requested information is received.
  3. Information required to address invalid reasons must not be submitted via the planning portal as we are unable to retrieve this information. It must be submitted via email to or by post. 
  4. The time limit for suspending the application is 21 days. After this period, the application is withdrawn and this is confirmed by either letter or email.
  5. Once an application has been withdrawn, you will need to submit a new application

Further information

For more guidance on the planning application process visit the decision making process - Planning Portal website