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South Bucks District Council
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Vehicular Access (Dropped Kerb) and Hard Surfacing

In order to construct a dropped kerb - known as a vehicular access in planning terms - you will need to submit an application to us and, once decided, send a copy of our decision notice, along with other documentation that may be required, to the Highways Authority for them to issue a licence.

As far as the District Council is concerned, there are two types of application which may apply; either 'Full Planning' or a 'Certificate of Lawfulness for Proposed Use'. Links to both forms and guidance notes are in the right hand panel of this webpage or you can apply electronically via the Planning Portal or by email to planning@southbucks.gov.uk.

Either application takes 6-8 weeks and, along with the completed application form, you will need to submit:

  • a Site Location Plan (usually at a 1:1250 scale) with the boundaries of the whole site outlined in red;
     
  • a Block Plan (usually at a scale of 1:500),  or a drawing clearly showing the location of the proposed drop kerb and any associated works on it; and
     
  • The relevant fee (£172 for full planning or £86 for a Certificate of Lawfulness)

     

The plans with either need a scale bar included,  or the dimensions must be clearly show in metres. An example of plans that would be acceptable is in the right hand panel of this webpage.

Choosing the correct application type depends on several factors such as whether the road is a Trunk road or a Classified road and whether  the vehicular access is being created in isolation or along with other works.

Please see the table below:

 Extent of other works to be done along with vehicular accessType of application needed
Trunk Road *N/AFull planning
Classified Road *N/AFull planning
Neither Trunk Road nor Classified Road *No other worksFull planning
Neither Trunk Road nor Classified Road *Hardstanding of less than 5 square metresCertificate of Lawfulness
Neither Trunk Road nor Classified Road *Hardstanding greater than 5 square metres in a porous material or with provision for surface water to run-off into a porous area within your property boundaryCertificate of Lawfulness
Neither Trunk Road nor Classified Road *Hardstanding greater than 5 square meters in a non-porous material and with no provision for surface water to run-off into a porous area within your property boundaryFull planning


* Bucks County Council can advise whether the road is a Trunk road or a Classified road (tfb@buckscc.gov.uk or 0845 230 2882).

If you are dropping your kerb as part of a larger planning application which is not Permitted Development, 'Full planning' will be required regardless of the road classification.

Hard surfacing in the front garden

As from 1st October 2008 all new or replacement driveways or areas of hard surfacing in the front gardens of residential properties which exceed 5 square metres in size need to be constructed using permeable or porous materials that allow water to drain through, such as gravel, permeable block paving or porous asphalt. Alternatively, if the driveway or area of hard surfacing is not constructed using permeable or porous materials, then rainwater must be directed to a lawn or flowerbed within the curtilage of your house so that it can drain away naturally.

If your proposed driveway or area of hard surfacing complies with the conditions above, then planning permission may not be required. You can view the original regulations  but please be aware that the fee quoted therein is now out of date.

Hardsurfacing in the back garden

Planning permission is not required for a domestic patio in the rear garden. This is because such works can be constructed under permitted development rights provided they are not on land between a wall forming the principal elevation of a dwellinghouse and a highway. Wood decking, which usually forms some type of platform, will require planning permission if it is more than 300mm above ground level.

This advice is for general guidance only and specific advice can be sought in writing. For formal written confirmation that planning permission is not required for a development you can apply for a Certificate of Lawfulness.

It should also be noted that flats, maisonettes, and mobile homes are not classed as dwellinghouses and, therefore, do not have Permitted Development rights. In addition, conditions are often placed on original planning permissions that remove Permitted Development rights from a property.