Planning applications in Folkestone and Hythe are submitted to, handled by and decided by Folkestone and Hythe District Council who are the Principal Planning Authority for the area.
Any applications that fall within Sandgate are then referred to Sandgate Parish Council to consider and give their opinion as a consultee on the application. Applications are considered at Planning Committee meetings, which are held “as and when required”. This is generally on Tuesday evenings at Sandgate Library, and notified at least 5 working days in advance.
Members of the Public, applicants, those in favour or against any application are welcome to attend Planning Committee meetings. They will be offered the opportunity to speak to the Committee prior to the consideration of the application by Councillors.
The Parish Council when considering applications will seek to see that there is reference to the Sandgate Design Statement and how this application sits within that framework.
The final decision to give or refuse planning permission remains that of Folkestone and Hythe District Council. However, the view of the Parish Council should be taken into account in the making of that decision.
On the Folkestone and Hythe Council website you can view and comment on current Planning Applications. Additionally, Planning advice, details of when a planning application is required and how to apply.
The Parish Council responses to planning applications are shown in the minutes of the Parish Council Planning Committee.
Applications that the Parish Council may not be requested to comment on:
Permitted development rights allow householders to improve and extend their homes without the need to apply for planning permission where that would be out of proportion with the impact of works carried out.
There are important exceptions/limits to this right, in particular:
- Property which is listed or within a conservation area or subject to an Article 4 Direction (which disapplies development rights to an area or specific properties eg local listed heritage assets) do not have development rights
- Extent of the works which are categorised by a ‘Class’ for example Class A – rear and side extensions, Class B – roofs and so on with each class of works having limits to extent of such works, for example
‘as a result of the works, the total area of ground covered by buildings within the curtilage of the dwellinghouse (other than the original dwellinghouse) would exceed 50% of the total area of the curtilage (excluding the ground area of the original dwellinghouse)’
‘the height of the part of the dwellinghouse enlarged, improved or altered would exceed the height of the highest part of the roof of the existing dwellinghouse’
The link below provides more detailed advice relating to each of the classes of development work and how the classes overlap.
Certificate of Lawful Development
There are 2 types of lawful development certificate. A local planning authority can grant a certificate confirming that:
(a) an existing use of land, or some operational development, or some activity being carried out in breach of a planning condition, is lawful for planning purposes under section 191 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990; or
(b) a proposed use of buildings or other land, or some operations proposed to be carried out in, on, over or under land, would be lawful for planning purposes under section 192 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990.
Certificates are usually applied for where a change of use or a development has been or is to be undertaken and the applicant wants certainty as to its lawfulness eg when selling a property or to prevent enforcement action.
There is no statutory requirement on the local planning authority to consult third parties including parish councils or neighbours. It may, however, be reasonable for a local planning authority to seek evidence from these sources, if there is good reason to believe they may possess relevant information about the content of a specific application.
‘Planning for the Future’
The government’s White Paper was published in August 2020 with consultation now ended.
Amongst the proposed major changes to increase home building is a proposal to significantly ‘widen and change the nature of permitted development, so that it enables popular and replicable forms of development to be approved easily and quickly, helping to support ‘gentle intensification’ of our towns and cities, but in accordance with important design principles’. The proposals for permitted development include upward development and demolition/rebuilding ‘enabling increased densities’. (see Proposal 14)