We’ve helped Warrington Borough Council to process householder planning applications for their residents, following a temporary reduction of staff within their planning department.

As is the case for many local authorities in the country, planning capacity can often be very limited. Our planning resilience team was able to provide Warrington Council with expert support in order to keep planning application decisions flowing. Our team worked seamlessly alongside Warrington Council to manage the high volumes of householder and minor planning applications coming through.

Our service allowed applications for the building of 1-9 new houses and up to 1,000sqm of new floor space for retail and industrial use to be processed efficiently, showing a real benefit to the work carried out in the area.

This additional occasional support was used when demand peaked and, based on the quality and flexibility of the service we provided, our team was further commissioned on a three month rolling basis over a two year period.

Some of the services we provided included:

  • planning application collections and handover briefings with council officers
  • reviewing the planning applications and supporting documents
  • conducting site visits and writing up assessments
  • reviewing national and local planning policy and any other relevant documents
  • assessing consultee and third-party representations
  • negotiations as part of the planning application process to secure amendments and added value
  • producing recommendations and condition reports and reviews
  • uploading all documents and reports to the council’s back office systems for a decision.

Working both remotely as well as on-site at the client’s offices, we were able to collaborate and complete planning applications on behalf of the council.

A better outcome

  • development and regeneration projects, investment in the area and job creation opportunities were all manageable due to the speed of our planning application and decision-making process
  • providing stability through our extra capacity and expertise, we quickly helped Warrington Borough Council meet their government targets to a high quality and so avoiding the potential of the council being put into special measures and having to refund planning application fees
  • customer expectations were dealt with by our consultants who were contactable by the applicant and the local community to discuss individual cases.
“The sheer volume of planning applications dealt with by Capita has been very impressive and helped us immensely during a period when our planning section was under severe pressure.”

Richard Evans, Principal Planner at Warrington Borough Council

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