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Pre-application Advice

Why Seek Advice?

Whether you are a developer of a large scheme or a householder wishing to improve your home, it is advisable to seek advice before submitting your planning application. We can let you know whether your proposals are supported by planning policy and whether there are any issues that may prevent  planning permission being granted.

Basic, free of charge advice on the planning process is available by visiting the main Council Offices at Whitfield  or over the telephone. Useful guidance can also be found on the Planning Portal  If you would prefer a specific review of your proposals and detailed guidance on the application process, we recommend that you obtain formal pre-application advice. This is a charged-for service and is available for any scale of development. We are happy to provide advice at any time, whether it is just a discussion on some initial ideas or a review of more detailed plans.

Seeking our advice gives you an opportunity to understand how local and national policies will be applied to your development. We will identify at an early stage where there is a need for specialist input, for example about:

  • Heritage Assets (including Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas)
  • trees
  • landscape
  • noise
  • transport
  • contaminated land
  • ecology
  • flood risk
  • archaeology

We will assist you in preparing proposals for formal submission which, providing you have taken our advice fully into account, will be handled more smoothly and  may lead to a reduction in time spent by your professional advisors in preparing proposals.  Amendments or alternative forms of development may be suggested if a proposal is unlikely to be acceptable.

You can use the service just once or you may find it beneficial to obtain advice throughout the evolution of your scheme.

Our charges

From April 2018 we have established a menu of charging to reflect the size and complexity of particular schemes. Hopefully your scheme will fit into these categories, but if not, do contact us for a quote.

Pre-application fees
ChargeWritten Written + Meeting
Householder   100  165
1-4 dwellings 250  350
1-4 dwellings follow-up advice*  150  250
5-9 dwellings  400  750
5-9 dwellings follow-up advice*  250  350
10-49 dwellings - 1,200
10-49 dwellings follow-up advice* 300 600
50+ dwellings - 2,300
50+ dwellings follow-up advice* 500 1,000
Commercial up to 250m² 100 165
Commercial up to 500m² 150 250
Follow-up advice* 85 150
Commercial up to 999m² - 600
Follow-up advice* 150 250
Commercial over 1000m² - 1200
Follow-up advice* 300 600
Listed Building Advice 185 285
Highways Kent Highways
Surface Water/Suds KCC Coastal/River
Flooding/Water quality Environment Agency


* This additional fee is applicable only if you require a formal review

It is not chargeable for matters of clarification


We also need the following information for schemes of 10 dwellings and above:

  • Written details of the address and proposal
  • Description of the nature and scale of the development proposed and the uses to which land and buildings are to be put 
  • Site location plan with the site clearly marked (to a recognised scale, north point etc) 
  • Sketch drawings providing details of the proposal (to a recognised scale) 
  • Photographs of the site and surrounding area, with particular regard to any nearby houses or other development which might be affected by your proposal 
  • Contact details including phone number and email address 
  • An initial design and access statement 
  • Access and parking arrangements 
  • This may also need to be accompanied by ecological, landscape, contamination, flood and transport assessments depending upon the location, nature and complexity of the development

What the costs cover

These fees cover administration costs and the time spent in research, assessment, a meeting as necessary, and in making a written response.

How to apply

Please email

Telephone: 01304 872486

Pre-application advice cannot guarantee the final formal decision that will be made on your application. However, any pre-application advice that has been provided will be carefully considered in reaching a decision.

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