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Planning Guidance

The Grange Association is happy to give advice on planning matters, whether you are concerned about proposals your neighbour is putting forward or whether you yourself are planning an extension to your house or just minor changes to your driveway.

Most of The Grange is within the Grange Conservation Area and many houses in the area are listed.  If you are not sure whether or not you live within the conservation area or whether your house is listed, you can find out by using this map.

The characteristics of the Grange Conservation Area are described in the Council’s Conservation Area Character Appraisal which you can download by clicking here.

Conservation area status protects the environment within which we live but if you are planning an extension or changes to your house, walls, gates or driveway you need to be aware of the constraints imposed by living in a conservation area or listed building.  We all appreciate that modern living will demand some changes to Victorian houses but it is important that these changes are sympathetic to the area.  Even small changes if inappropriate and repeated by a number of owners can change the character of the area.

The City of Edinburgh Council has produced a series of guidance booklets which can be downloaded here.

Particularly relevant are:

Guidance for Householders

Guidance on Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas

Edinburgh Design Guidance

Grange Conservation Area Character Appraisal – 2014 version

These booklets are for guidance only and exceptions can be made if the case can be justified. However, all new development should conform with the Local Development Plan (LDP) which contains a large number of policies which are adhered to in all but exceptional circumstances. The current LDP can be viewed here and its policies are indexed on page 185 of that document.

For us, the most relevant policies are

Des1, Design quality and context

Des3, Development design

Des11, Alterations and extensions

Env3, Listed buildings – Setting

Env4, Listed buildings – Alteration and extensions

Env5, Conservation areas – Demolition of buildings

Env6, Conservation areas – Development

Env12, Trees

City of Edinburgh Council has produced helpful information. If you are concerned about a development which is already taking place in your area, you should first check the planning application (if any) here. Some minor development is allowed under Permitted Development”, explained on the Government website, as are minor repairs such as replacing windows like for like but if you think a development is unauthorised, you can report it to the Council’s Enforcement team. This can be done on-line.

You may have been made aware that a neighbour has applied for planning permission. If so you can check the application here, call in to the Planning Department at Waverley Court or contact the enquiry desk at 0131 529 3550 (open 9am – 1pm Mon – Fri) or planning@edinburgh.gov.uk. You can lodge a “comment” on any planning application provided the comment is received before the deadline (given as expiry date on the website). To be effective, an objection should show how the plans would contravene the planning policies or planning guidelines although the latter will carry less weight.  Comments can be submitted on-line or by letter and must include your name, address and telephone number.

If, on the other hand, you are planning a project yourself, you should refer to the page “Applying for Planning Permission” which explains the process.

Planning issues can be a cause of serious conflict between neighbours and we would always recommend talking face to face to your neighbours before submitting a planning application or before objecting to a neighbour’s plan. Sometimes minor changes to the plans can leave both sides happy.

Finally, if you have queries about planning matters, we should be pleased to try and help.  You can contact us at planning@grangeassociation.com