Planning enforcement

Planning enforcement deals with breaches of planning control, including:

  • Unauthorised building or engineering works 
  • Unauthorised change of use of land or buildings
  • Non-compliance with Conditions attached to a Planning Permission, Listed Building or Conservation Area Consent
  • Unauthorised works to a Listed Building
  • Unauthorised work to a tree with a Tree Preservation Order or other trees in a Conservation Area
  • Unauthorised display of advertisements
  • Unauthorised work to a listed building, the unauthorised display of advertisements or unauthorised works to protected trees or trees growing in conservation areas is a criminal offence.

We take all possible breaches of planning control seriously and investigate them as quickly as possible. However, issuing an enforcement notice is often a last resort. Many breaches can be resolved through discussion with the landowner who then voluntary rectifies the problem.

Some cases do, however, require swift and decisive action by the Council and we may exercise our 'right of entry' onto land where access is denied.

Please note:

  • We are currently reviewing our Enforcement Policy and Procedures.
  • If you are concerned about an unauthorised use or development then please follow the procedures below:

Concerned about an unauthorised development?

Please contact our Planning Team by:

Please include your contact details (phone number, email address) and the following information:

  • the exact location of the site
  • the nature of the suspected breach
  • when the breach started
  • the problems it is causing
  • a photo of the suspected breach (if possible).

Without the above information, we will be delayed following up your complaint. 

We deal with complaints confidentially and there is no public right to access information about complainants but that the investigation may be made public.

We aim to deal fairly with all concerns about unauthorised development and must confirm the facts before deciding if enforcement action should be taken.

West Oxfordshire District Council
Elmfield
New Yatt Road
Witney
OX28 1PB