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Planning enforcement and unauthorised developments

Report an issue with unauthorised developments and read about breaches of planning rules.

Unauthorised developments

Common examples of unauthorised development include:

  • residential or commercial developments or extensions that have not been granted planning permission, or that do not fall under permitted development rights
  • breaches of planning permission conditions, such as the hours of operation or permitted noise levels
  • unauthorised changes of use, such as from a house to a shop
  • unauthorised advertisements
  • any other unauthorised structures.
How the council investigates reports of unauthorised developments

We assign a case officer to investigate the complaint to see if there has been a breach of planning permission. If we find a breach has taken place, we will contact the person responsible and determine a plan of action. We will inform all interested parties of the outcome of our investigation.

In some cases, a breach may be so minor that no further action will be taken. In other cases, we will issue a warning letter and attempt to negotiate with those responsible to resolve the situation. This may include applying retrospectively for planning permission, or ceasing the unauthorised activities.

If negotiations fail, we may take enforcement action – which can eventually lead to prosecution if left unresolved.

More about planning enforcement.

We have recently drafted an enforcement plan with its aim being to provide clarity to all parties who may be involved in or affected by a planning enforcement issue.

Appealing against an enforcement notice

Anyone receiving an enforcement notice for unauthorised development has a right of appeal. There is no fee for making an appeal, unless also applying for planning permission. All appeals must be received before the date the enforcement notice takes effect. Appeals are normally decided within 36 weeks.

How to appeal an enforcement notice

Restrictions on properties used for holiday accommodation

The government encourages developments relating to tourism, so long as approved holiday accommodation is not used as a person’s sole or main place of residence. This helps to protect the countryside, prevent excessive pressures on local services and delivers sustainable objectives.

Many developments within the East Riding of Yorkshire provide self-catering holiday accommodation, such as caravans, cabins and building conversions, which would not have been approved unless the accommodation is used for holiday purposes only.

In deciding whether holiday accommodation breaches occupancy conditions, factors include:

  • Whether the occupier spends the majority of their time in the accommodation
  • Whether the occupier receives their mail at the accommodation
  • If the occupier is registered to vote at the accommodation, or is registered with a local GP or dentist
  • If the occupier’s child or children attend a school local to the accommodation
  • If the occupier or their family carries on employment or business when based at the accommodation

Read more detailed holiday accommodation guidance.