Planning process

Applications go through set stages – registration, validation, consultation, decision and sometimes appeals.

We'll register your application within 3 working days. You or your agent will receive a confirmation letter with a temporary reference number.

We will also tell you who your case officer is.

Validation is where we decide whether we have enough information to understand and fairly decide your application.

You won't pass this stage if information is missing, poor quality or you haven't paid the right fee.

We'll let you know within 5-10 working days if your application is invalid, as well as what you need to send to make it valid.

Read more about validation and download checklists.

Once validated we start to process your application and will add it to the weekly planning list.

Your application is now public so people can see it online and at council offices.

We let local and parish councils and other statutory bodies (such as the Environment Agency or Kent Police) know about your application so they can make comments. The case officer will decide whether to let neighbours on the planned site know.

Our Statement of Community Involvement (PDF, 833.0 KB) details public consultation and engagement measures throughout the planning application process.

We will put up a site notice outlining the proposal as well as advertising your plans in the local press if necessary.

It takes at least 8 weeks to decide on minor applications, 13 weeks for major applications and 16 weeks for applications accompanied by an environmental statement.

If we don't receive major objections or planning concerns, officers may make a decision.

Some planning applications are reported to the Planning Applications Committee.

Planning Applications Committee

The Planning Applications Committee considers applications which are likely to be controversial, receive major objections or don't stick to our Local Plan or Local Development Framework policies.

Speaking at the meeting

Call us on 03000 41 68 92 to arrange to speak.

Members of the public can attend and speak at meetings if they have already sent a written comment about the application.

You can add information that is missing or an emphasis you feel is not being made in the report about the planning application.

Read our leaflet on speaking to the Planning Applications Committee (PDF, 448.6 KB).

Read the committee's agendas, reports, minutes and other details.

If you applied for minerals or waste development permission you can appeal against our decision. No one else can appeal.

You appeal to the independent Planning Inspectorate and must do so within 6 months from the date of the decision letter. If we haven't been able to make a decision (non-determination) you should appeal within 6 months from the date the decision should have been made.

Read more about planning appeals and planning enforcement appeals.