Town and parish council planning

This section is specifically designed to help Town and Parish Councils with issues regarding planning.

We hope that this page will give you information to help you in your role as a town or parish councillor and answer some of the most frequently asked questions that you raise with us.

Planning News

See our News Page for the latest information.  This includes any changes to regulations or fees for both Planning and Building Control.

We will include updates to the planning system,  forthcoming training events and our service in the bi-monthly South News publication.     Also see the downloads section for recent presentations.

Parish Plans

The South Oxfordshire Partnership (SOP) has produced a guide to tell you about the help and support available for community led plans in Oxfordshire.  See our community-led planning page or visit the new community-led planning website for more information.

Neighbourhood planning

The Department for Communities and Local Government has produced some information on Neighbourhood planning, which can be found by clicking the link below.

We provide guidance notes for developing neighbourhood plans.

Planning Applications 

  • Application Details.  If you would like information on a particular planning application, just type the reference number in the search box at the top right-hand corner of any page on our website and it will take you to the relevant page. Alternatively, visit the Planning Register section where you can search by planning reference number, address, date or via our interactive map
  • Planning Committee.  For information regarding committee dates/agendas please see our Planning Committee details page.  These are webcast, so you can see the whole meeting as a video.
  • Material Considerations.  We are often asked, 'What is a material planning consideration?'  Please see the download on this page which should answer this question for you.
  • Use Classes.  If for example, you would like to know what a B1 or C3 use is for example, you can find all the definitions in the Use Classes Order Planning Portal This link will take you to an external website... .
  • Application suffixes.  A lot of our planning application reference numbers have a suffix on the end.  See the download on this page to find out what they all mean.
  • New Scheme of Delegation.  We recently wrote to all Town and Parish Councils regarding our new scheme of delegation.  For your reference, you can download the flow diagram we enclosed with that letter from the downloads section.
  • Email alerts.  If you would like us to notify you of planning applications in your local area, please sign up to our email alert system.  Currently this is based on a postcode search, but we are hoping to expand this soon.

Major Planning Applications

In connection with significant major developments, we will send, in addition to your consultation notification, a  separate letter requesting your views on potential S106 contributions to be secured by the district council.  We will need justified and costed proposals that have community support.  There are legal tests that we must comply with,  that are set out in the letter.

We are developing a protocol to involve you, recognised local bodies, the developer, ward councillors, the planning committee and officers in a structured meeting at the pre-application stage or during the processing of the application. 

Permitted Development

In October 2008 and May 2013,  the Government introduced a range of measures to reduce the need for planning applications including some householder development.  See our page on permitted development or the document in our downloads section for more information.

For additional information on permitted development rights which came into effect on 30 May 2013 relating to changes of use, please refer to the document in our downloads section or the Planning Portal Planning Portal This link will take you to an external website...

Interactive maps

We have three interactive maps on our website which are very useful sources of information.  One gives the details of any planning applications on a particular property, the second gives information on any relevant planning policies and the third gives details of conservation areas and listed buildings within the district.  Use these links to find the maps:   

Planning enforcement

We have a register of planning investigations, which you can search by parish area or directly if you have a reference number.

This register sets out details of the alleged breach, the location, the current status and the case officer.   We do not disclose the name of the complainant. 

Information on Tree Preservation Orders

You can check if a property falls within a conservation area or if a tree is covered by a tree preservation order using the TPO and conservation area search.

You can view all recent notifications and tree works applications by searching the tree works register.

Is there anything missing here? Let us know

If you have any suggestions of what you would like included please email

Last reviewed: 27 - 04 - 2017

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