Make a Planning Application

Planning Applications

The Planning Department with its small friendly team deals with all planning applications including those for planning permission, listed building consent, conservation area consent, advertisement consent and works to trees. On average around 100 applications are processed each year.

Because of the status of the islands as a Conservation Area, AONB etc. there are several Directions under Article 4 of the Town and Country Planning (General Development Procedure) Order 1995 which have removed the rights to carry out a range of works that could normally be done without requiring planning permission. All potential applicants/developers are therefore advised to contact the department before carrying out works, or submitting formal applications, in order to ascertain whether permission is required and if it is likely to be granted upon application.

The Senior Manager for Infrastructure & Planning has delegated powers to determine planning related applications. Major applications and those relating to strategic decisions will require a committee decision and the Planing Protocol is being reviewed to make it clearer under what circumstances other applications can be called to committee by Members of Council. Applications requiring a committee decision will be determined at Full Council meetings which meet around once a month. The calendar of committee meetings can be found here. Information on the conduct of Officers and Members whilst handling applications can be found in the Planning Protocol.

Because of the need for neighbour notifications, statutory consultations with external bodies such as Historic England, Natural England and other organisations and time for consideration by officers, there is a timetable to be adhered to and you should therefore allow at least 6-8 weeks to get a decision on your planning application (this does not include any pre or post application processes such as pre-application advice or discharge of conditions applications). A valid planning application including correct forms and fees (as prescribed by central Government), site plan, existing and proposed drawings and other documents required must be received before it can be registered and the clock started.

After around 3 weeks of an application being registered, it will be determined whether the application needs to go to a committee meeting or whether it can be determined under the delegated powers of the Senior Manager: Infrastructure & Planning. If required to go to committee, an application will go to the next available committee once time has been allowed to conclude the consultation and consideration period (around 6 weeks from validation as a guide). The consideration process is the same regardless of the decision level and a decision will be issued within 8 weeks of validation in most cases unless otherwise notified.

To see the list of current applications and recent applications with decisions, go to the application list page.

Please direct any enquiries regarding existing applications or potential applications to the Planning Department by email or on 01720 424350 and you will be put in touch with the relevant officer as necessary.


Committee Meetings

Please note that planning applications requiring a committee decision will now go to Full Council Meetings. A calendar containing meeting dates can be found here.

As indicated above, the decision level (committee or delegated) of an application will be set after the first three weeks from validation (note, not on the receipt of an application). If an application is required to go to committee for a decision, it will go to the next committee after all consultations and considerations have been made. This takes at least 5 to 6 weeks from validation sometimes longer. If you are targeting a specific committee date, it is advisable to get an application in to the department for the validation process to begin at least 8 weeks prior to that committee date. Please note that there may be amendments or further considerations that need to be made on some applications that can delay the determination of applications.

Recordings of all public Council meetings including the Planning Committee can be viewed on the Council's Youtube channel. These are usually available from the day following the meeting. 


Further Information for Making Applications

For information on local planning policies, please look at the Isles of Scilly Local Plan. This should be read in conjunction with the Isles of Scilly Design Guide which provides detailed information on design principles that are in keeping with the character of the islands. Further information about other supplementary planning documents and guidance which should be considered when putting together a development proposal can be found here.

The Planning Portal gives further guidance as to what requires planning permission and how to make a planning application. You can also complete planning application forms online via the Planning Portal.

A website called Planning Practice Guidance is available. Important information for any user of the planning system previously only published in separate documents can be found quickly and simply. You can link easily between the National Planning Policy Framework and relevant planning practice guidance, as well as between different categories of guidance.

Planning Aid England offers free, independent planning advice and support to individuals and communities on planning issues. The service is part of the Royal Town Planning Institute, a charity and the professional body for planning. It has paid staff as well as a strong professional volunteer network. Planning Aid England can prepare individuals and communities for their involvement with Local Authorities and the development plan process (e.g. through advice and training). It also provides help and support on planning applications. For further details visit their website.

The Department of Communities and Local Government have published a Plain English Guide to the Planning System which gives a good overview of the English planning system and how it works.

See our document explaining how Payments can be made to the Council in relation to applications.


Application Forms

The forms for making every type of application can be found on the Planning Application Forms page. The general make up of an applications includes the completed application form, a location plan indicating the location of the property, a block plan of the site, other necessary existing and proposed plans, supporting statements, design and access statements and any other documentation that is specific to the type of application.

There is a Validation Checklist outlining National and Local Requirements to identify what additional information to submit with your application and the Glossary of Terms for a guide as to what is required for each plan or document.

Fees* Please note that these are due to increase by 20% in July 2017, see the March Planning Committee agenda for more information

Most application types attract a fee payable to the Council of the Isles of Scilly. The fee for your planning application can be calculated using the Planning Portal's Planning Application Fee Calculator or by reading A Guide to the Fees for Planning Applications. If you require help or clarification calculating the fee for an application please contact the planning department for confirmation.

Amendments to Planning Applications

If amendments need to be made to an existing planning permission, a formal application must be made. If the amendments are considered to be non-material to the original permission then a Non-Material Amendment application can be made which has a turnaround period of 28 days including a 14 day neighbour re-notification. If a material amendment to the original permission is proposed, a new planning application will be required and will have to be determined in line with normal procedure and time periods (6-8 weeks). This can be done with an application to vary a condition on the existing planning permission as there will be a condition stating which plans the development is to be carried out in accordance with.

Further information on what constitutes a non-material amendment can be found in the following Guidance to Non Material Amendments.

If you have any queries about your planning application, please contact the Planning & Development Department (Tel: 01720 424350, email: