Last edited 07 Jan 2021

Section 73

Rather than refusing a planning application, a planning authority might grant permission, but with conditions attached. These conditions might require additional approvals for specific aspects of the development (such as the colour of materials) or might restrict the use of the site (for example limiting operating hours). See planning conditions for more information.

Section 73 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 'determination of applications to develop land without conditions previously attached' permits application to remove planning conditions or to vary planning conditions following the grant of planning permission.

Application is made to the local planning authority, who may either refuse the application, grant the application to remove or vary conditions unconditionally, or grant the application to remove or vary conditions, but with further conditions attached. A fee is likely to be chargeable for the application.

A section 73 application can only be made if the time within which the development was required to begin has not expired without the development commencing.

The section 73 application process can also be used to make a ‘minor-material amendments’ to a planning permission, that is, amendments ‘…whose scale and nature results in a development which is not substantially different from the one which has been approved’.

A specific 'non-material amendment' application process came into effect in October 2009, but no new process was introduced for minor-material amendments, and so these applications are still submitted using the existing section 73 procedure.

Section 73A of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 permits retrospective planning applications to be made for developments which have been carried out without permission, or which have been carried out without complying with some of the planning conditions imposed on a planning permission.

NB Where a condition or conditions attached to a listed building consent become inappropriate, Section 19 of the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 permits application to change those conditions without re-opening the entire permission.

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