Development Management


The Development Management Service is responsible for dealing with all of the various types of applications under the Town and Country Planning Acts that are part of the process for delivering new development; works to protected trees; planning enforcement; conservation; and local land charges.


Most building work, engineering work and use of land requires planning permission, and the purpose of Development Management is to ensure that the development is carried out in accordance with local and national planning policies and guidance.  Further information relating to planning at both the national and local level are contained on the Department for Communities and Local Government's website and the national Planning Portal.  The Planning Portal website also hosts the National Planning Policy Framework and Planning Practice Guidance which are likely to assist you when making planning applications.  The Richmondshire Local Plan sets out the local policies for that part of the District outside the Yorkshire Dales National Park.  The Planning function within the National Park lies with the National Park Authority.
North Yorkshire County Council is the lead local flood authority for the area.  From 6 April 2015 local planning policies and decisions on planning applications relating to "major" developments are required to ensure that sustainable drainage systems (SuDS) are used for the management of surface water.  A "major" development is one involving the provision of ten or more dwellings or (if the number of dwellings is not known) the proposal is for a site having an area of 0.5 hectares or more; the provision of a building or buildings where the floor space to be created by the development is 1,000 square metres or more; or the development would be carried out on a site having an area of one hectare or more.  Please refer to the North Yorkshire County Council web site for more details about SuDS drainage for major development schemes.
The area of land extending south westwards from Jervaulx Park up to Witton Moor (south of East Witton) also lies within the Nidderdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB).  Planning applications within this area are still considered and determined by the District Council, but the AONB Joint Advisory Committee is a consultee on such proposals.  When dealing with such proposals the District Council is required to have regard to the purpose of conserving and enhancing the natural beauty of the area.  The Nidderdale AONB web site provides further information, along with a copy of the latest Management Plan.

About 90% of all applications are approved and many are subject to conditions.  All applicants have a right of appeal against a refusal or conditions imposed that they do not agree with.  Notes on how to appeal any decision are included on the decision notice.  There is no third party right of appeal. Unless otherwise stated, development can begin at any time within 3 years (previously 5 years) of the date of the permission although details set out in the conditions must be agreed beforehand.

Often other approvals are needed before work can start, e.g. covenants on a property or Building Regulations.  If these approvals introduce significant changes to a scheme a new planning permission may be needed.  Smaller and less significant changes can sometimes be made to a planning permission that has already been granted through processes known as a Non-Material Amendment (for changes which have no impacts) or a Material Minor Amendment (for changes which might affect other interests).

Please see our Public Access facility for detailed information about applications which have been made since 2006 and where you can also view relevant documents and make comments on any current application.

If you would like to make a planning or other similar application to the District Council you can use the facility provided by the national Planning Portal to make an on-line submission.  Most planning applications are now submitted online.  Using the Planning Portal is the preferred way to submit your application to us.  Registration is easy and you can complete your application form, buy site location plans, upload supporting documents and pay fees online.


The benefits of applying online include :

Please note that a planning application cannot be progressed until the necessary supporting information and the appropriate fee is received.

Get started on the Planning Portal :


Planning Officers are available to offer advice and guidance if you are proposing to submit an application.  We provide a Duty Planning Officer who is available to provide informal advice on planning matters for visitors to Mercury House during normal office hours.  The Duty Planning Officer can also be contacted by e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by telephone 01748 901131.

Works to Protected Trees

The Development Management Service is responsible for the administration and management of matters relating to trees covered by Tree Preservation Orders and trees in Conservation Areas.  This work involves the survey and inspection of trees for inclusion in new Tree Preservation Orders as well as the consideration of proposals by owners to fell or carry out works to trees covered by Orders or situated within a Conservation Area.  Complaints against high hedges are also dealt with by the Development Management team. 
Please click these links if you would like more information about works to protected trees or high hedge complaints.

Planning Enforcement

Public acceptance of the development management process is quickly undermined if unauthorised development, which is unacceptable on planning merits, is allowed to proceed without any apparent attempt by the Council to intervene before serious harm to amenity results from it.  There are several tools available to the Council under the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 (as amended) for dealing with a breach of planning control. 

Complaints from any source other than anonymous complainants will be investigated and acted upon as quickly and efficiently as possible. However, enforcement workloads preclude immediate action on all complaints received, and therefore there needs to be some prioritisation by enforcement staff.
Please click this link if you would like further information about planning enforcement.


Conservation Areas are defined as "areas of special architectural or historic interest, the character or appearance of which it is desirable to preserve or enhance".  Richmondshire is fortunate in having many fine buildings and attractive towns and villages which are distinguished by their architecture, landscape and history, creating an attractive district environment which is the product of several different eras.  These "Conservation Areas" are important examples of our social, cultural and economic history and must be safeguarded from indiscriminate or ill-considered change.  These Areas often contain "Listed Buildings" which have individual statutory protection.  However, it is not always enough to protect these buildings in isolation.  Their surroundings and general environment are often of equal importance and Conservation Areas are intended to protect that environment.  We have a responsibility to ensure that the character of these areas is not diminished in our lifetime.
Please click this link if you would like further information about conservation in Richmondshire.

Local Land Charges

The Council undertakes searches on individual properties - usually on behalf of prospective purchasers - to identify any town planning, statutory orders, highways, housing and environmental health matters which might impact on the property.

Please click this link if you would like further information about our Local Land Charges service,

For general information about any aspect of the Development Management Service please email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Telephone: 01748 829100