Ringwood Town Council is not the Planning Authority and therefore can only make comments (known as ‘observations’) on planning applications.

Our observations are forwarded to New Forest District Council (NFDC) which, as the Planning Authority, ‘determines’ the applications by giving consent or refusing them.

For further information please see newforest.gov.uk/planning

There are a small number of properties in Ringwood within the New Forest National Park (NFNPA); when planning applications for these are received, the observations are similarly forwarded to NFNPA for determination.

The options on which Ringwood Town Council’s responses are based are shown below.

Permission (1) Recommend Permission, but would accept planning officer’s decision

Refusal (2) Recommend Refusal, but would accept planning officer’s decision

Permission (3) Recommend Permission

Refusal (4) Recommend refusal

Officer Decision (5) Will accept planning officer’s decision

Options 1 and 2 mean that the Planning officers at NFDC or NFNPA can make a decision contrary to the Town Council’s recommendation.  Members use these options when they don’t have a strong opinion on the application, or when they believe that the Planning officer may receive further information that will affect the decision (for example, comments from the Highway authority or Conservation officers).

Options 3 and 4 mean that if the Planning officer’s decision is contrary to the Town Council’s recommendation, the planning application must be determined by District Councillors at the NFDC or NFNPA Planning Development Control Committee. These options are used when Members have strong opinions on applications.

Option 5 is used when Members don’t believe that they have sufficient information to make a recommendation.

In addition to receiving copies of the planning applications, the Town Council also receives a briefing note from the NFDC or NFNPA Planning Officer, giving their initial views on applications and highlighting the main points to consider. All of this information can be viewed on NFDC or NFNPA websites, along with plans, elevations and comments from interested parties.

NFDC Planning –  http://planning.newforest.gov.uk  In the Application Quick Search, input an application number (e.g. 13/10826) and then click on Search. The record for that application is then displayed in a new window and further information can be found by clicking the tabs shown. The plans can be found under ‘Related Documents’ by clicking ‘view associated documents’.

NFNPA Planningwww.newforestnpa.gov.uk/planning  click ‘View Applications’.

Tree Applications

NFNPA also manage all tree applications – those within the national park, and those in the District Council’s area. There are two types of tree application: TPO – Tree Preservation Order, and CON – Conservation Area. If a tree is protected by a TPO, by law no work (from pruning to felling) may be undertaken without NFNPA permission. If the tree is within a designated ‘conservation area’ (and this includes the whole of the national park) residents need to notify NFNPA of proposed works, but may proceed, unless they hear to the contrary from NFNPA within the time limit advised to them.

Ringwood Local Distinctiveness Supplementary Planning Document (SPD) was adopted by New Forest District Council on 3rd July 2013. The document is aimed at ensuring new development is well designed and respects local character and distinctiveness. The document can be viewed on the Planning Policy pages on the District Council’s website – the direct link is http://www.newforest.gov.uk/index.cfm?articleid=14409

Ringwood Town Access Plan was adopted by New Forest District Council and Hampshire County Council in 2011 and sets out a shared vision for how access to facilities and services within the town can be improved. The link is http://www.newforest.gov.uk/index.cfm?articleid=14292

Applicants are entitled to challenge a refusal of planning permission through the appeal process.

Further general information about planning and appeals may be found on the Planning Portal – www.planningportal.gov.uk