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Due to essential maintenance, the following systems will be unavailable from 6.00pm on Monday 2 October until 8.00am on Tuesday 3 October: our online council tax, business rates and housing benefit services, and our welfare assistance form. You will also not be able to register to pay council tax online, make a change of address for council tax or cancel single person discount. You are still able to make a payment during this time. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.

Planning decisions and appeals

Find out how we make decisions and how to appeal if your planning application is refused or if you disagree with conditions that are imposed.

How are planning applications decided?

The majority of applications are decided by our planning officers, although some larger scale ones are decided by one of our planning committees, see details on this page. Under the council's constitution, councillors and local parish and town councils can also ask that an application, which would normally be decided by officers, is referred to committee for consideration. Such a request must be made on material planning grounds. If you have concerns about a particular application and feel that it would benefit from being determined by committee then you should contact your local councillor

The committee gets a recommendation from the officer on whether to approve or refuse an application, but will also take evidence from interested parties before making a decision.

If permission is granted a decision notice will outline any additional conditions which must be met. If permission is refused, we'll state our reasons why in the notice. 

Latest planning decisions

Use the County Durham planning application system to search for planning application decisions, appeals and enforcements online by keyword, application reference, postcode or by a single line of an address.

Read the  Icon for pdf Durham planning system user guide (PDF, 791.8kb)  if you need any help in using the system.

Appeals - what if you don't agree with the decision?

Only the applicant can appeal a decision.

If planning permission is refused, applicants have a right of appeal to the Planning Inspectorate: appeal service. The appeal deadline varies depending on the type of project.  

Before you make an appeal, the Planning Inspectorate recommend that you talk to us. If changes could be made to a proposal, it's better to resubmit an application, rather than appeal. 

Find out more about the process in the planning appeals - procedural guide.

Contact us
03000 262 830
Our address is:
  • County Hall
  • Durham
  • County Durham
  • United Kingdom
  • DH1 5UL