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Apply for pre-application planning advice

We offer pre-application advice on a variety of planning matters that you will need to consider before applying for permission, such as:

  • if you need planning permission for your proposal
  • if your proposal is likely to be acceptable when submitted as an application and possible changes you can make if not.
  • the previous planning history for your site and any planning constraints that apply
  • advice on local and national planning policies that apply to your proposal
  • planning obligations (S106 agreements or CIL payments)
  • consultation or publicity you should carry out before submitting your application 

All advice is given on an informal basis, assessed in accordance with relevant planning policies and current legislation. Our advice is intended as a guide to assist in finding out if a proposal would be acceptable in principle. Some factors cannot be assessed until application stage, when a site visit and relevant consultations are carried out.

The advice we give at pre-application stage does not provide a formal legal opinion. If you require formal confirmation that planning permission is not required, you can apply for a Lawful Development Certificate. This will provide a legal decision as to whether the development meets the criteria for permitted development.

Apply for pre-application planning advice

Apply to the council below that you wish to make an application to. If you are unsure if your application site is within the South Downs National Park please use the Do I live in the National Park? web tool.

Use our online form to apply for pre-application planning advice to Lewes District Council.

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Information required

For us to assess if planning permission is needed and/or if planning permission is likely to be granted, we need you to provide us with clear information, so we can offer accurate advice. The information we need depends on the type of proposal and the level of advice you need.  

Before applying, you should have the following documents ready to email or post to complete your request:

  • address of the site and contact details including an email address

  • a site/block plan identifying where the land or property is located

  • drawings, sketches, plans of the proposal

  • photographs of the site

  • any other information relevant to the proposal (e.g. use, parking, materials)

  • the relevant fee  

Fees

You must include payment with the application. Your application will not be validated or processed without the fee. Your enquiry is only valid when the fee has been paid and you have submitted all the information required for us to advise you on your proposal. To view the fees, please see the pre-application fee schedule below.

Exemptions

Some development types do not need a fee, these include:

  • advice to town/parish councils

  • advice to the voluntary sector, charitable trust or not-for-profit organisation

  • schemes which comprise 100% affordable housing

  • advice on disabled access or modification 

  • regulation 5 notifications for telecommunications/broadband

Timescale

Your enquiry will be allocated to a case officer who will usually reply within 20 working days from the date that the enquiry was validated.

How to pay

You can pay the fee by:

  • sending a cheque, made payable to 'Lewes District Council', addressed to: Planning Services, Southover House, Southover Road, Lewes, BN7 1AB

  • by debit/credit card by phoning the Planning Information Office on 01273 471600 (credit cards are subject to a surcharge)

  • in person by cheque at the Lewes District Council Office Southover House, Southover Road, Lewes, BN7 1AB between 9am and 5pm Monday to Friday

Unfortunately we are unable to accept cash payments; we apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.

Use our online form to apply for pre-application planning advice to Eastbourne Borough Council

Start now

Information required

Before applying, you should have the following documents ready to email or post to complete your request:

  • a site/block location plan

  • a sketch plan

  • good quality photos of the site

  • any other supporting documents you have (optional)

  • the relevant fee

Fees

Please note that from 1 April 2017 pre-application advice requires payment. To view the fees, please see the pre-application guidance notes and fees document below. Payment must be made with the application. Your enquiry will not be processed without the fee. Fees are subject to VAT.

Please note that if you are paying by credit card you will be charged an extra 1.5%.

Exemptions

Most pre-application advice will need a fee; however there are some requests that are free of charge which are:

  • proposals solely to provide access, alterations or extensions for disabled persons

  • works for preserved trees

  • works on trees in a conservation area

  • works for charities

  • works for community groups

  • works for town councils

Timescales

Once you have submitted your request it will usually take between 4-5 weeks for a response, depending on the type of project. If your submission does not meet the validation requirements, we will not be able to progress your request. 

How to pay

  • pay online if you apply online

  • pay by telephone or by visiting the Customer First contact centre at 1 Grove Road, Eastbourne, BN21 4TW

  • if you submit a paper form, you can either come in to pay at the Customer First contact centre or a customer caseworker will be touch within 5 working days to take payment by phone.

Pre-application advice in the South Downs National Park

The South Downs National Park Authority (SDNPA) offer pre-application advice on planning matters across the whole of the National Park, provided through their partner authorities.

Please note that the SDNPA publish all pre-application enquiries and therefore your enquiry will be publicly available to view online.

Visit the SDNPA website to apply for pre-application advice and view their pre-application advice fee schedule.

All cheque payments for applications within the SDNPA area must be made payable to ‘South Downs National Park Authority’ and sent with a covering letter quoting the application site to: South Downs National Park Authority, South Downs Centre, North Street, Midhurst, GU29 9DH.

If you are unsure if your application site is in the South Downs National Park please use the Do I live in the National Park? web tool.