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Planning / Building Control - What's the Difference?

What is the difference between planning permission and building regulations approval?

Building regulations approval is entirely separate from planning permission.

Planning permission does not give you building regulations approval (nor does building regulations approval give you planning permission).

It is your responsibility to find out what permissions you need. If you are in any doubt, please ask us. We are here to offer free guidance.

Planning Permission

It is the planning authority that controls the development and use of land. Our planning officers consider planning applications and decide whether to give permission or not.

Our aim is to protect and improve the quality of the environment by making sure all new development are acceptable. For example, we check that development is well designed, is in an appropriate place and will not cause harm to neighbours.

Building Regulations Approval

Building regulations lay down standards for the construction of all types of buildings, including (but not limited to):

  • foundations
  • damp-proofing
  • the overall stability of the building
  • insulation
  • ventilation
  • fire protection
  • means of escape in case of fire

Building regulations approval is the means by which we check that a building is built to these standards.

The aim is to protect the health and safety of people who use the building, in the interest of the environment conserve fuel and power and ensure that adequate facilities for people with disabilities are provided within certain types of buildings.