Planning Application Guidance

Types of Planning Applications

Full or Detailed Planning Permission

This type of application allows you to submit full details of the proposal in one stage. The plans require must be sufficient to show full details of the development clearly and accurately. Change of use is required when you wish to change the use of land or a house/building from its existing use.

If you plan to development within the garden area of your house and are unsure of whether or not your proposal requires planning permission, feel free to have a look at our information on Householder Permitted Development Rights (below) or Contact a Planning Officer to discuss your proposals.

Planning Permission in Principle

The purpose of such an application is to establish whether the principle of developing a piece of land is acceptable. A further application(s) for the approval of matters specified in conditions is then required to confirm the final detail of the development.

Applications for the Approval of Matters Specified in Conditions

This type of application is for the submission of details required by conditions imposed on the granting of planning permission in principle.

Modification, Variation or Removal of Planning Conditions

If you are unable or unwilling to comply with a condition attached to an existing consent, you may apply for its removal, variation or modification. Detail of the reasons or justification for the condition to be removed, altered or varied should form part of the application.

Applying for Planning Permission

Applying for Planning Permission

Planning Fees

The Planning Fees Schedule will assist in determining the relevant planning fee for your proposed development.

Notice of Initiation of Development 

A person who has been granted planning permission (including planning permission in principle) and intends to start development must, once they have decided the date they will start work on the development, inform the planning authority of that date as soon as is practicable.  This ensures that the planning authority is aware that development is underway, and can follow up on any suspensive conditions attached to a planning permission.  There is no minimum period of notice, so in theory the notice could be submitted at any point right up until work commences.  However the notice must be submitted before starting work.  Please use the form provided below.

Notice of Completion of Development 

A person who completes a development for which planning permission (including planning permission in principle) has been given must, as soon as practicable after doing so, give notice of completion to the planning authority. Failure to comply is not in itself a breach of planning control under section 123(1) of the 1997 Act.  Please use the form below. 

Map and Site Plan Guidance

You will require plans and maps to support your planning application. Please find helpful information below which provides guidance on obtaining maps and the level of detail we require in a general Site Plan

Housing Design

Design is a material consideration in the determination of a planning application.  Prior to submission of a planning application for the Extension or Erection of a House or Building, please ensure that you have considered your proposal in relation to our Outer Hebrides Design Guide. 

If you plan to development within the garden area of your house and are unsure of whether or not your proposal requires planning permission, feel free to have a look at our information on Householder Permitted Development Rights (below) or Contact a Planning Officer to discuss your proposals.

Design Statements and Design and Access Statements

A Design Statement is now required for certain applications, namely Planning Applications for developments within:

  • the World Heritage Site of St Kilda
  • Conservation Areas (Gearrannan, Ruisgarry, Howmore and parts of Stornoway)
  • the designed landscape of the Lews Castle Grounds
  • the South Lewis, Harris, and North Uist National Scenic Area or the South Uist Machair National Scenic Area
  • the site of a Scheduled Monument
  • the curtilage of a category A listed building

(Please see the Local Development Plan for detailed maps on the above)

Design and Access Statements will be required for Major and National developments, as defined by the Scottish Government's hierarchy of development.

Exceptions include applications for Planning Permission for (i) Engineering or mining operations or (ii) development relating to an existing dwellinghouse or (iii) Material Changes of Use. Furthermore, "Design Statements" are not a statutory requirement for applications for "Planning Permission in Principle" or "Approval of Matters Specified in Conditions" but the Comhairle's Planning Service may, at its discretion, require a Statement through a condition attached to a Planning Permission in Principle.

Low and Zero Carbon Buildings

Section 3F of the Town and Country Planning (Scotland) Act 1997 as amended introduced a requirement that on new buildings (with some exceptions) a percentage of the carbon dioxide emissions reduction (calculated through Standard Assessment Procedure (SAP) or Simplified Building Energy Model (SBEM) methodology) be delivered by low and zero-carbon generating technologies (LZCGT).  This is required in support of a Planning Application.

This requirement does not apply to any of the following:

  • Buildings which will not be heated or cooled other than heating solely for frost protection;
  • Alterations or extensions to existing buildings;
  • Changes of use or conversion of existing buildings;
  • Stand-alone ancillary buildings with an area of less than 50m2;
  • Buildings with an intended life of less than 2 years;
  • Buildings which are designed so that the energy necessary is integral to the structure requiring minimal additional mechanisation (the passive house concept).

Caravans

The Comhairle’s detailed planning policy for the siting of Caravans is contained in the Outer Hebrides Local Development Plan document "Caravans & Temporary Buildings".  In order to assess planning applications for these developments further information is required.  Please use the form below to provide additional information for Caravans.

Temporary Buildings and Containers

Please use the form below to provide additional information for Temporary Buildings and Containers.

Minerals

The Comhairle’s planning policy on Minerals is contained in the Outer Hebrides Local Development Plan.  In order to assess planning applications for these developments further information is required.  Please use the form below to provide additional information for Minerals applications.