Last edited 09 Jan 2016

Reserved matters in planning permissions

Outline planning applications can be used to find out whether a proposed development is likely to be approved by the planning authority, before substantial costs are incurred developing a detailed design. Outline planning applications allow the submission of outline proposals, the details of which may be agreed as 'reserved matters' applications at a later stage.

On 10 August 2006 changes to the outline planning permission process came into force intended to make outline planning applications more 'detailed' and so to restrict the extent of reserved matters. Reserved matters that might be the subject of further applications once outline planning consent has been obtained can now include:

  • The layout of buildings within the proposed development.
  • The precise height, width and length of individual buildings.
  • The appearance of buildings.
  • Access to and within the site for vehicles, cycles and pedestrians.
  • Landscape proposals.

Reserved matters applications should be submitted within 3 years of outline permission being granted.

Outline planning permission lasts for two years from the date reserved matters were approved, or three years from the date of the outline planning permission, whichever is the later.

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