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Comment on or Object to a Planning Application

Every planning application is considered and determined having regard to the Development Plan and any other material considerations. Anyone is entitled to comment on  or object to a planning application, but to be effective any objection must focus upon the 'planning merits' of the case. 

Allowing those affected by proposed developments to submit their views

During the process of determining a planning application members of the public that could be affected by the proposed development can submit their views to Dudley Council.

There is a time period during which comments should be made. If you have received a letter and would like to comment on the application via the website, please submit any comments by the date indicated on the letter. Alternatively, if you have not received a letter please contact the case officer who will advise of the deadline for submitting your comments. Please be aware that comments received after the deadline may not be taken into account in determination of the application.

The council has a duty to take these views into consideration when deciding the application, but only where the views represent what are known as “Material Planning Considerations.” These include:

  • Loss of light or overshadowing
  • Scale of development proposed
  • Impact on trees
  • Impact on highway safety


Considerations which cannot be taken into account include:

  • Right to a view
  • Competition
  • Loss of property value


Should I object?

You may have received a letter notifying you of a nearby development proposal.  If you have any concerns then any objection must be rational, impersonal and directed principally to the planning issues raised by the proposal.

What should I do next?

Establish the facts, because all too often objections are submitted which are based on an incorrect understanding of the application.  You can inspect the application forms, plans, drawings and other information submitted by the applicant.  You may wish to discuss the application with a Planning Officer so that any technical details can be better appreciated.

You may wish to consider whether simply discussing the application with the applicant could resolve any of your concerns which could lead to the application being modified or improved.

Making your objection or comment

If after considering the application and reviewing the options you still wish to make representations then the next step is to send your comments in writing to us. Your objections will need to be made within the 21 day consultation period.

You can make a comment on a planning application as follows:

  1. Online: Search for a Planning Application on our online system and make your comments directly online

  2. By Post: Write to Development Control as per the contact details below

Please note when making your comments that:

  • Comments can be in favour of the application, against the application, or to provide further clarification;

  • You should quote the planning application reference number and the address to which the application relates;

  • You should be aware that written comments will be placed on the application file and made available on the website for viewing by any interested member of the public. Please see our Data Protection Disclaimer web page for further information;

  • Comments made verbally cannot be accepted as representations.

  • The Council reserves the right to obscure or refrain from publishing comments they consider to be defamatory | harmful to either the objector or applicant.  

What happens to my comments?

We will consider your comments along with council and national policies and guidelines.

Most planning applications are determined under delegated powers by the planning officers but if the application needs to be considered by the Development Control Committee we will not copy all the letters received but your comments will be summarised in a report. Your letter may be copied and circulated to members with the committee papers. A petition and/or a bundle of standard letters will be regarded as one objection when referred to in the officer's report.

What matters will the committee take into account?

The Development Control Committee considers all applications on planning grounds only. The council's Unitary Development Plan is an important consideration so you may wish to refer to relevant policies in your letter of objection.

Issues the committee can normally consider

  • overshadowing
  • overlooking or loss of privacy
  • adequate parking and servicing
  • overbearing nature of proposal
  • loss of trees
  • loss of ecological habitats
  • design and appearance
  • layout and density of buildings
  • effect on listed building(s) and Conservation Areas
  • access or highways safety
  • traffic generation
  • noise and disturbance from the scheme
  • disturbance from smells
  • public visual amenity, but not loss of private individual’s view
  • flood risk


Issues the committee cannot normally consider

  • loss of value to individual property
  • loss of view
  • boundary disputes including encroachment of foundations, gutters
  • private covenants or agreements
  • the applicant’s personal conduct or history
  • the applicant’s motives
  • potential profit for the applicant or from the application
  • private rights to light
  • private rights to way
  • damage to property
  • disruption during any construction phase
  • loss of trade or competitors
  • age, health, status, background, work patterns of the objector
  • time taken to do the work
  • capacity of private drains
  • building or structural techniques
  • alcohol or gaming licences


The above issues do not cover everything, but are meant as a guide to help you when preparing your statement.

Can I make verbal representation to the Committee?

If the application needs to be considered by the Development Control Committee there will be an opportunity for the applicant or agent or supporters and objectors to address the Committee before a decision is made.

If you have sent a letter and if the application needs to be considered by the Development Control Committee, we will write to you with the date of the meeting at which it will be considered.  If you have sent a petition or a proforma style letter, only the originator of the petition or letter will be informed in writing.  You will also be advised how the Development Control Committee operates and how you can take part in the proceedings.

What decision can be made?

That the planning application should be:

  • Approved, possibly with conditions
  • Refused
  • Deferred to enable amendments or further information to be submitted
  • Deferred to enable the Development Control Committee to visit the site or a video presentation to be prepared


What happens next?

If planning permission is refused the applicant may choose to appeal to Communities and Local Government . Anyone who has submitted comments about the original application or who has spoken about the application at the committee will be informed and given the opportunity to comment further.  However, should the council approve the application, interested parties do not have the right of appeal, although if you consider the council acted in a manner that did not conform to established procedures then you might consider a complaint to the Ombudsman.


Contact Details

  • Name Planning Help Desk
  • Address Development Management, Planning and Economic Development, Directorate of Place, 4 Ednam Road, Dudley, West Midlands, DY1 1HL
  • Telephone 01384 814136