Planning enforcement is about ensuring that the national planning legislation is administered on site and that no unauthorised works or breaches of planning law occur.
Breaches of planning control usually take one of the following forms:
A building is erected, extended or altered without planning permission.
Work is carried out which does not comply with approved plans.
A condition imposed on a planning permission is not complied with.
An unauthorised change of use of a building or land, such as the use of a residential property for business use.
Alterations to historic buildings, display of signs, works to protected trees and untidy land may also result in breaches of planning-related legislation.
If individuals carry out unauthorised works, (e.g. where there has been an irretrievable loss of a historic building, valuable protected trees, or there is continued non-compliance after formal action), the person responsible may be prosecuted.
Each Planning Authority has a department that deals with planning compliance and enforcement. The procedures followed by each authority may differ slightly, but the purpose is the same, i.e. to enforce planning regulations and compliance with approved applications.
NEW FOREST NATIONAL PARK AUTHORITY ENFORCEMENT
The Authority has a dedicated Enforcement Team which is responsible for handling complaints alleging a breach of planning control and for monitoring new developments to ensure compliance with approved plans.
Whilst it is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure that development is carried out in accordance with the approved plans and any conditions attached to the planning permission, the Authority’s Enforcement Team will monitor new development to ensure that development takes place in accordance with the approved plans. In many cases planning permission is issued with conditions which require further information to be submitted before or during the course of development. The Enforcement Team will follow up any failure to submit information and also visit sites to check work in progress.
The document “Monitoring and Enforcement” provides further advice on the Authority’s procedures and timescales for enforcing compliance with planning controls.
WILTSHIRE COUNCIL ENFORCEMENT
The council has a dedicated Enforcement Team within Development Management. Their job is to deal with enquiries about breaches of planning and other controls, and seek to resolve such breaches through informal and formal enforcement action where necessary.
Further information on procedure can be obtained by clicking here.