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Planning enforcement

Lancaster City Council Privacy Statement (Enforcement)

As the Local Planning Authority, Lancaster City Council collects, processes and stores personal information about you in order to investigate potential planning breaches, and to fulfil certain legal obligations with respect to planning enforcement. To find out more about how we process your data please refer to the Council’s Privacy Policy for Enforcement.

Making a complaint

Before making a complaint, you may be able to discuss your concerns directly with the owner of the property or land in question. If this is not possible, then we may be able to investigate your complaint. However, please be aware that we cannot investigate matters that lie outside the scope of planning control, such as boundary disputes, land ownership queries and obstruction of a right of way.  You should also note that some works do not require planning consent.  If you are unsure if planning permission has been granted for a development, you can search all planning applications and decisions.

When making a complaint, you should include:

  • Your name and address
  • The address of the property or land where the alleged breach of planning control has occurred
  • The nature of your complaint (eg change of use of land or buildings, erection of buildings or extensions, works to trees or hedgerows, untidy land etc)
  • The reason for your complaint (please describe the impact or harm that the alleged breach of planning control is having - eg increased noise, increased traffic, looks unsightly etc)

The above information is essential for us to investigate your complaint. Due to the large number of complaints we receive, a priority system is used and complaints with the greatest impact will normally be investigated first. We understand that complainants may wish to remain anonymous, but in order for us to assess the impact of an alleged planning breach this information is important.

To make a complaint please complete our enforcement report form. Alternatively you can email the details (as required above) to

Local Planning Enforcement Plan

The Council's Local Planning Enforcement Plan (LPEP) was approved on 29 January 2024 and it explains how the Planning Enforcement Team will investigate cases where there are breaches of planning control. The LPEP includes standards of service and case management information that the team will aim to adhere to at all times. 

Not all breaches of planning control are sufficient to warrant enforcement action. The LPEP includes a detailed ‘Expediency Test’ which will be used to assess each planning enforcement case.

The LPEP sets out the possible Notices and other actions that might be pursued if breaches of planning control are not satisfactorily remedied. It also provides helpful guidance regarding matters that are the responsibility of other organisations and agencies.

Planning enforcement register

In accordance with the requirements of Section 188 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990, we maintain a register of the enforcement notices, breach of conditions notices, stop notices and enforcement orders that we have served since 1996. The list is updated on a quarterly basis. We will not accept responsibility for any errors or omissions in the information provided.



If you have been served with an Enforcement Notice you have a right of appeal to the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government.  

Further information on appealing a Notice is available from the Planning Inspectorate, including how to submit your appeal.  Enforcement appeals are determined using one of 3 procedures as laid out in the procedural guide.





Last updated: 18 June 2024

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