New system makes it easier to report potential breaches of planning controls

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A new way for people to report potential breaches of planning controls is being introduced by the Peak District National Park Authority.

The new online enquiry form makes it easier and quicker to provide relevant information and for Authority officers to carry out an effective investigation. The form includes an interactive map which can show the precise location of the property in question and photographs can also be uploaded.

Breaches of planning control occur when someone carries out development, such as building works or a change of use, without first obtaining planning permission.

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Principal enforcement planner Andrew Cook explains: “The National Park is an area of national, regional and local importance and is one of 15 national parks in the UK to be designated for their natural beauty, cultural heritage and wildlife and for people to enjoy them.

A new way for people to report potential breaches of planning controls is being introduced by the PeA new way for people to report potential breaches of planning controls is being introduced by the Pe
A new way for people to report potential breaches of planning controls is being introduced by the Pe

“The Authority recognises the importance of an effective planning enforcement service to protect what is special about the National Park and to safeguard the interests of residents, businesses and visitors from the harmful effects of unauthorised development. So, we have two officers whose main responsibility is investigating reported breaches of planning control.

“We receive between 350 and 400 such reports each year, many via e-mails or phone calls, and the information we get can sometimes be unclear or short of detail. We hope that the online enquiry form will result in a more consistent level of information being provided at the outset which will allow us to investigate more efficiently.”

In cases of extreme urgency – such as demolition of a listed building or the felling of trees covered by a Tree Preservation Order – officers can be informed immediately by telephone so they can act more promptly. An online form will still need to be completed and submitted.

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If there is a genuine reason why someone cannot submit their enquiry online – due to lack of internet access or a disability which prevents them from using the online form – they can contact the Authority’s Customer and Democratic Support Team advisors who will help with the enquiry.

We encourage enquirers to provide their name and contact details so that we can get in touch if we require further information or clarification and can report back once we have carried out our investigation.

Whilst the subject of the enquiry is public information, the enquirer’s name, address or other personal details will not be published or otherwise made available as they are protected by data protection legislation.

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For urgent enquiries and those unable to use the online form, call 01629 816200.

Office hours are 8.45am to 5pm, Monday to Friday. On bank holidays the offices are closed. Out of hours there is a facility to leave a telephone message.