Planning enforcement is the process of investigating potential breaches of planning control and, where found, resolve to take the most appropriate means of action to remedy the breach.
What is a breach of planning control?
A breach of planning control is defined in the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 (as amended) as:
“the carrying out of a development without the required planning permission, or failing to comply with any condition or limitation subject to which planning permission has been granted”.
What We Do?
The Authority has a dedicated team of Planning Enforcement Officers responsible for investigating breaches of planning control and seeking remedial action where necessary throughout the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park. See our ‘Key Contacts’ page for details on the structure of the team.
Planning permission is required for the majority of building works or other operations including alterations to buildings and changes in use of buildings and land. Listed Building Consent is required for any works (including those internal) that affect the character of a Listed Building. Advertisement Consent is required for various forms of signage displayed.
If the necessary planning permission or consent has not been obtained then there may be a breach of planning control or even a criminal offence liable to prosecution. The Authority will always explain the options open to resolve a breach and only pursue formal action where it is expedient to do having regard to the special qualities of the national park, public amenity and the adopted Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority Local Development Plan.
Enforcement is largely a ‘complaint’ or ‘enquiry’ driven process although the Authority will regularly monitor developments that have planning permission and those which require the discharge of planning conditions.
The Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority has a current ‘Planning Enforcement & Compliance Policy’. This Policy was adopted by the Authority on 22 June 2011 and sets out the current processes in relation to investigating breaches of planning control in the National Park area.
In addition to the above further information can be found in our advice leaflet entitled ‘A Guide for the Public’. This has been produced to help explain the key stages in relation to planning enforcement including investigation and explain how complaints received by the Authority are handled.
What we will investigate
• Erection of buildings, extensions or alterations to buildings
• The material change of use of land or buildings
• The breach of a condition imposed on a planning permission
• The failure to comply with plans approved as part of a planning permission
• Works to or the removal of a hedgerow or a protected tree
• Works to a Listed Building
• Untidy land and buildings
The Authority will not usually investigate anonymous breaches of planning control unless they allege a serious breach of planning control and will not become involved in matters which fall outside planning control including neighbour and land ownership disputes.