How to comment on planning applications

How to comment on a Planning Application

There are three ways to comment on a planning application

  1. Email to planning.objections@hounslow.gov.uk  quoting the relevant Planning Reference Number.
  2. Post your comments on the council planning website form against the application concerned (this is the preferred method for the Council).

Use this page of the Council website to locate the relevant Planning Application (https://www.hounslow.gov.uk/info/20064/planning_decisions ). There are several ways listed here to search for the planning application. Once you locate it you will see a summary of the application as below. The location (i.e. address) of the application and the Planning Reference Number will be where the blue boxes are below

Click on the “Click here to comment on this application” and follow the instructions. If you do NOT see such a link after the short description of the application then it means the application is NOT open for comments from residents (e.g. it has already been approved, or has been withdrawn) – this can be seen from the Decision field.

3. Send a letter with your comments to:

Planning Objections
London Borough of Hounslow
Civic Centre
Lampton Road
Hounslow
TW3 4DN

Please ensure the Planning Reference Number is included at the head of your letter.

How to structure comments on a Planning Application

Individual letters from many people are more effective than a petition. Furthermore template letters/cards will be counted together as one submission. So please use your own words (rather than copying from someone else’s submission) as this gets more attention from the council

Put the reference number(s) and location in the heading/email subject line and ensure you quote the Planning Reference Number on all communications otherwise your views will not be counted.

Your submission must include your name and address and clearly state whether you support or object to the application.

Don’t worry about style, neatness or how you write; being yourself impresses.

Don’t be offensive or discriminatory; they are not planning arguments. Also try to avoid emotive language; keep your arguments based on clear facts.

Comments should be restricted to planning considerations only (such as failure to meet planning guidelines, impact on infrastructure, pollution, compatibility with surrounding area and similar matters). Impact on house prices is not a planning consideration. All planning decisions are based on evidence and must be defensible and reasonable, so your arguments need to be factually correct.

Ensure you submit your response within the deadline stated by the council for responses. Receipt of your comments should be acknowledged by the Council. You should retain a copy of your submission.

Guidelines for what to comment on

In constructing your arguments, you may find the following useful to develop your arguments

  • Describe the area that will be affected by the proposed development
  • Say if and how it will affect or impact on you, your road and/or your neighbourhood.
  • Say if others, such as residents’ associations or community groups, support your position.
  • Focus on size and visual impact; is it in keeping in terms of scale and style with nearby properties, and the area?
  • Is it land-grabbing (taking land for development that has another specific purpose e.g. Metropolitan Open Land, a local park, allotments, etc.)?
  • Is it garden-grabbing (using garden space to build an extra property)?
  • What about density or over-development?
  • Is it overbearing, out of scale, out of character? If it is ugly, say so.
  • Does it overlook or overshadow existing neighbouring properties ? Will it intrude or cause loss of privacy or light?
  • Will it affect services: schools, access to GPs, transport, traffic, parking, roads, etc. in terms of additional demand on already overstretched services?
  • Will it create noise or disturbance after (not during) construction?
  • Will it affect or be affected by air or noise, safety?
  • Will it damage trees or require trees to be removed; is landscaping an issue?
  • Is it in or will it affect a conservation area or will it impact on a nearby listed building?
  • Does it meet the Hounslow Local Plan (here) and/or the London plan (here)  and does it follow Hounslow planning guidance (here)?