Skip to content

BBfA Planning and Building Control

Who is affected?

Planning permission/building control is required for all new business and commercial premises and most alterations and/or extensions to existing premises. 

You may need planning permission, if you plan to:

  • Relocate to a new premises
  • Change or expand your existing premises
  • Change the hours of your business
  • Display adverts
  • Change the use of your premises - The Town and Country Planning (Use Classes) Order 1987 (as amended) puts uses of land and buildings into various categories. In many cases involving similar types of use, a change of use will not require planning permission but will still need to meet building regulations.


Top tips:

  • If you’re running a business from home you may need planning permission if you are making changes to your home, or if running your business will cause a ‘material change’ in the usage of your property. Checking with your local authority is likely to prevent any problems for you further down the line
  • Before you negotiate a lease or buy a property for your business, check whether you need to obtain planning permission for your intended use, and, if so, your chances of getting it.
  • Conditions on a planning approval may limit the days/times the business can operate or the hours that deliveries can be accepted. They may also require you to submit information for approval to the local authority prior to opening the business e.g. plans to reduce noise or odour nuisance.
  • Planning controls don’t only apply to buildings – they can also cover changes to vehicle access, parking, installation of flues and works to trees.
  • Check the guidance on displaying adverts and consult your local authority if you think you might require planning permission to place an advert somewhere.
  • The Building Regulations 2010 cover the construction and extension of buildings and these regulations are supported by Approved Documents. Approved Documents set out detailed practical guidance on compliance with the regulations
  • Building regulations approval is different from planning permission and you might need both for your project.

Useful Links:

The Planning Portal  -

Gov.UK -