The Planning Process

North Somerset Council is the planning authority responsible for planning decisions within the Parish of Congresbury and is the only body that can make decisions within the Parish. Congresbury Parish Council is empowered and entitled to make observation or comment on an application to North Somerset Council on behalf of the Parish.  Individuals may also make comment on an application, directly to North Somerset Council and are welcome to comment on applications at Planning Committee meetings.

Guidance on new planning applications can be sought via the Government’s Planning Portal website, or via North Somerset Council on 01934 888802.

Once North Somerset Council has accepted and verified the application it will:-

Display the application on the North Somerset Website, where it is freely available for the public to view
Notify any near neighbours of the application
Advise the Parish Council of the application

Advise the Ward Councillor of the application
Put up a notice at or near the development site
Notify any statutory consultee e.g. The Environment Agency, Internal Drainage Board etc

Within Congresbury, the Parish Council has delegated powers relating to planning to the Congresbury Parish Council Planning Committee. This Committee usually meets once per month on the last Monday of the month. Members of the public are welcome to attend this meeting and make their views known to the Members of the Planning Committee. The Committee will consider each application on its merits and in line with current North Somerset Planning Policy, Congresbury own local planning policy and regional and national planning policies where relevant. Congresbury Parish Council's planning policy is available here.

Following consideration of each individual matter, together with any comments from the public, the Committee will make its recommendations to North Somerset Council. Members of the public are also able to make their views known to North Somerset Council directly by adding comments on the planning website or in writing.

The Parish Council may take the opportunity to request that the Ward Councillor ‘Calls In’ an application should the Committee feel that the application is contentious, outside current policy or relates to a matter of importance to the general community. When an application has been ‘called in’ the planning decision will no longer be made by the delegated planning officer at North Somerset but will be referred to an area committee of Local Ward Councillors for a decision. In certain circumstances the area committee may itself refer the matter to the full Planning and Regulatory Committee at North Somerset Council.

Once a Planning Application is approved, that is the end of the matter. Should an application be refused, the applicant has the right to take their case to appeal. Further information on this can be found on both the Planning Portal website or the North Somerset Council websites outlined above.