Bringing Clarity & Focus To The Planning Process

Obtaining planning permission is rarely straightforward. To meet with success, applications need to clear a plethora of legislative and bureaucratic hurdles designed to encourage sustainable development, direct economic activity, increase the provision of affordable housing and protect your local environment.

Irrespective of whether you’re trying to build your dream home or a large residential development, there’s a very good chance that you’ll need to provide extensive documentation that demonstrates a thorough understanding of:

  • Your site and its surrounding context
  • The likely impact of your proposed development (environmental and economic)
  • The feasibility of your project
  • Local views on your proposed development

To achieve the much-vaunted stamp of approval, you’ll also need to pay due consideration to the ever-changing nature of planning law.

The UK’s planning system is in a constant state of flux; pulled between the competing and contradictory national governments, local councils, advocacy groups, and environmental campaigners.

And that's not to mention the pressures exerted by local business interests and neighbourhood planning groups.

Practical Advice & Support From Chartered Town Planners

To help you navigate the vagaries of the planning process, we offer expert consultancy from RTPI chartered town planners who are well-versed at negotiating the subtle intricacies of local policy and national law.

When it comes to achieving planning permission, we have a long and successful track record that extends to particularly complex and challenging projects.

We've helped clients achieve full planning permission for large residential projects in greenbelt land; obtained the green light for plans that called for the demolition and subsequent replacement of 4 storey homes and successfully obtained detailed planning permission for 40+ apartment complexes in crowded city centres.

In part, we owe our track record to a longstanding practice of embedding our dedicated planning consultants in the early stages of the design process.

Working side by side with the wider design team, our in-house consultants help to shape plans in-line with current best practices – accounting for local planning policy and the interests of any local advocacy groups to ensure that your project has the best possible chance of sailing through its initial review.

Whether you come to us with a plan, an idea or a dream, we'll help you conceive and execute a strategy that’s designed to mitigate risks and overcome hurdles.

We'll help you follow the local consultation process; gather topographic surveys, ecology reports and landscape and visual impact statements (LVIAs) needed to maximise your chances of success.

We'll also help you draw up the block plans, 3D models and visualisations needed to sell key stakeholders and other interested parties on your project. Should it prove necessary, we can also help you prepare the audit trail and justification statement needed for a successful appeal.

Obtaining Planning Permission For A Large Development In Greenbelt Land

Case Study

Client: Private Client

Contract Value: n/a

Procurement: n/a

Duration: Dec 2018 – Aug 2021

Services: RIBA Stage: 0-1

Twelve Twenty One Planning Services approached RA and asked us to promote the Woods Farm site in Shirley as a Strategic Urban Extension (SUE) for up to 750 units, through the Solihull Local Plan Review.

Working closely with the local council, landowners and other consultants we managed to secure an allocation in the Local Plan.

We achieved this outcome by coordinating a full suite of comprehensive studies (including a detailed master plan) that demonstrated the site’s deliverability and made it clear that the wider impact upon the Green Belt in this area could be managed and compensated for in such a way that the overall form and function of the Green Belt will be maintained.

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Planning Consultancy

Expert Advice From Day One

Our Planning Services

Planning Feasibility Studies

Your first step towards a successful application, we prepare robust feasibility studies that demonstrate your project’s viability and inform later stages of the planning and development process.

Planning Policy Background Reports

Providing detailed insight into the specifics of your local planning process, our planning policy background reports allow you to make informed decisions about the direction of your project. 

Planning Strategies To Inform Land Acquisition

Drafted to ensure that you’re making an informed decision, our planning strategies consider all the variables that are likely to affect the potential of a given plot or site - and suggest potential routes to a successful application. 

Planning Statements

A key part of any successful application, we prepare robust and comprehensive planning statements that provide a balanced justification for your project – accounting for its context and any relevant material considerations.

Planning Applications

Prepared by RTPI chartered planning consultants, our applications are hand-crafted to maximise your chances of success – featuring the detailed documentation and supporting evidence required by most UK authorities.

Detailed Planning Permission

For builders, investors or landowners seeking full planning permission for a project, we can assemble a multi-disciplinary team with the experience required to get you that all-important stamp of approval. 

Outline Planning Permission

Where outline planning permission is preferable, we offer a bespoke service that’s scaled back to reduce your outlay. Draw on expert knowledge and local expertise at a price proportional to the scope of your project. 

Obtaining Prior Approval

For permitted development work, our RTPI chartered town planners can help you assemble the documentation and plans needed to seek and obtain prior approval from your local authority. 

Obtaining A Certificate Of Lawful Development

Where there are questions about the legality of proposed or executed developments, we can help you seek and obtain a certificate of lawful development that will safeguard the value of your property. 

Discharge of Planning Conditions

To ensure that you preserve the validity of a granted planning permission, we can help you prepare the documentation - including forms and detailed plans - needed to formally discharge one or more conditions.

Section 73 Applications

To help you remove or change conditions previously imposed on a planning permission, our multi-disciplinary team can help you prepare a robust section 73 application, and help you submit it to your local planning authority.

Public Consultations

Whether it’s legally required or not, public consultation is a key part of the planning process. We can help you set up, navigate and record public consultations with an eye towards placating concerns and mitigating risks. 

Planning Appeals

Where initial plans are rejected, we specialise in producing the audits and justification statements needed to achieve a successful appeal. We can also help you review and update untenable plans. 

Drafting Written Representations

Written representations tend to be the simplest and most expedient way of making an appeal, but they do need to be prepared with great care. We excel at drafting detailed and convincing written representations. 

Preparing For Local Hearings

Where planning appeals are to be dealt with via a local hearing, we can help you prepare documents, statements and arguments that are designed to placate fears and promote interest in your project. 

Preparing For Public Enquiries 

News that your appeal will proceed with a public enquiry can be intimidating, but there are ways to navigate the process and receive a favourable outcome. RA can help you prepare in good time – and maximise your chances of success.

I would definitely recommend them, especially if you want a design which is stylish and contemporary, but also in keeping with its setting.

Managing Director The Tree and Woodland Company

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