Schedule 4(d) Development Management Procedure Order states that it is a statutory requirement that Parish Councils are consulted prior to a grant of permission.
When a planning application is received by the Forest of Dean District Council they send the Parish Council the details of the application along with a deadline for a response. Churcham Parish Council will then discuss the application at their regular parish council meeting or there may be an extraordinary meeting in the event of the deadline falling before the next meeting and the district council does not grant an extension of time.
In order to get a better idea of the proposed development, a Parish Councillor or the Clerk may contact an applicant to arrange a site visit and report their findings back to full Council at the next meeting. It is the decision of the applicant whether or not they agree to such a visit as the Parish Council has no authority to come on to the site without the applicant’s permission.
Engaging with the Parish Council
We encourage people who are submitting planning applications within Churcham Parish to liaise with the Parish Council by attending the meeting where the planning application will be considered. Each member of the public may address the council for three minutes per planning application. This time may be extended at the discretion of the Chairman.
The Parish Council will consider each application and may resolve to support it or object to it. This resolution is made by a majority vote, with the Chairman having a casting vote if there is no clear majority. The Parish Council can only vote if there is at least one third and no less than three councillors present and able to vote on the matter. Councillors with a declarable interest in the application will not be able to vote and will have declared their interest at the start of the meeting. It is a serious breach of the Councillors’ Code of Conduct if they do not declare an interest when they should. You should note that the district council is not obliged to take into account the response of the Parish Council when it is making its decision.
If you want advice on planning matters then the Forest of Dean District Council has a helpline that you can contact on 01594 810000. There is also information on the Forest of Dean District Council website on how to either submit or view planning applications. You can also comment on applications submitted to the Forest of Dean District Council by clicking here.