Permitted development is an aspect of Town and country planning in the United Kingdom which allows people to undertake minor development under a deemed grant of planning permission, therefore removing the need to submit a planning application. Permitted development is currently set out in the Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) Order 1995 (amended in 2008).

The Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004 has empowered Local Authorities in Great Britain to create their own permitted development rights in certain circumstances by means of a Local Development Order.

Permitted development rights can also be removed from properties by local authorities, either through "Article 4" Directions (usually made within residential parts of Conservation Areas), or when a conditional planning permission is granted for a development.

What is considered to be permitted development in England and Wales is set out in the following Statutory Instruments:-

S.I. 2008/2362 principally replaces the aspects concerning domestic extensions etc. for England only (i.e. not Wales) of S.I. 1995/418. The main changes include:-

  • Extensions at ground level are now principally governed by maximum dimensions depending upon the location and number of storeys e.g. a single storey extension to the rear of a detached house should be a maximum of 4 metres deep from the original rear wall and a maximum of 4 metres high. There are additional clauses relating to using similar materials, side windows to upper floors, eaves heights etc.
  • Roof alterations and loft conversions retain the earlier approach of being based upon the external increase in volume (40m³ terraces, 50m³ elsewhere) with some additional clauses to avoid overlooking at the sides, using similar materials etc.
  • Small porches (up to 3m² externally) follow the previous guidance including a maximum height of 3m and minimum distance from a highway of 2m.
  • Detached buildings partly follow the previous guidance in being primarily controlled by their maximum height (4m dual-pitched, 3m elsewhere) but now incorporate a limit of 2.5m eaves height or where within 2 m of a boundary. The original limit of building on no more than 50% of the original garden area still applies but detached buildings in close proximity to the house are no longer included with attached extensions.
  • There are new clauses restricting replacing front gardens with impermeable surfaces and allowing minor modifications to chimneys, soil pipes etc. Other clauses relating to satellite antenna, micro generation equipment etc. are retained in slightly modified form.
  • More restrictive limits apply to conservation areas, National Parks etc. or may have been applied by the local authority to individual properties or areas by means including planning conditions and Article 4 directions.

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