How has Planning and Building Control been affected by COVID-19?

Many of our clients have asked us how the Local Authorities are dealing with Planning applications and Building Regulations submissions and inspections during this time …

We hope you are all staying well during these unprecedented times. Our full team have all been working from home with daily staff online meetings and constant contact over the phone, Zoom and email. We are currently holding online or telephone meetings rather than face-to-face meetings with our clients and professional contacts.

Similar to us and many other businesses, the planning officers and building inspectors are now working from home with contact via their direct email. Visits to sites or properties are continuing unaccompanied. New applications are still being accepted, validated and continuing through their usual process and timescales and consultees are responding in a timely matter.

We have submitted a number of applications over the last few weeks as many of our clients want their approvals to be ready for when we come out of lockdown. Each application is progressing in a timely manner with great communication between ourselves and the planning officers and building inspectors. LPAs are only accepting digital submissions rather than hard copies, and some public comments will not be visible online.

Pre-Application responses may take longer than usual as some LPAs don’t have a set deadline for responses. We have also been sending more existing site photos than usual to accompany applications if the planning officer is unable to visit site.

Many planning applications require a number of surveys to accompany the submission and applications will not be validated until they are received. Many surveyors who need to visit sites or properties have suspended work. Our team of consultants are still visiting vacant sites and properties which comply with social distancing requirements. It is therefore advised to instruct your surveys early to avoid delays.

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you require further advice or information.

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