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Public inquiries

Some appeals, especially those dealing with bigger proposed developments, are heard by public inquiry. If you have been interested in the application since it was submitted to your local council, you may want to ask to speak at the inquiry to make sure that your comments are heard and taken into account.

A public inquiry on an appeal will be held if either the applicant or the local council who made the decision requests it. The move to take an appeal to a public inquiry is a highly significant one, and is not a decision that will be taken lightly by the Secretary of State.

Appeals might be dealt with by public inquiry if:

  • The planning application is controversial in some way or else indicates considerable local opposition
  • Or perhaps the proposed development threatens an area of Green Belt
  • The removal of a treasured woodland that has been enjoyed for generations.

If a public inquiry is called for a planning application that concerns you, you have a good opportunity to present your case on behalf of your community.

However, your involvement in a public inquiry or other form of planning appeal will demand considerable commitment from you and your supporters.


This means

Organising your evidence


  • Preparing your case involves large amounts
  • Of time
  • Effort
  • Resources
  • Teamwork

If you are successful, the hard work will have all been worth it.

Your reward will be the immense satisfaction of knowing you have safeguarded your local environment for all, now and in the future.

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