Planning pre-application advice for developments

We offer specialist advice on planning applications for major and minor developments. You can use this before you submit your application.

Major and minor developments range from small housing projects to commercial builds. When you apply for planning permission you’ll need say if it's either major or minor. At this stage you can use the same form.

If you're planning something on a large scale we strongly advise that you apply for advice. Please do this before you apply for planning approval. Pre-application advice assists in streamlining the decision making process. It enables us to provide full guidance to improve the quality of your submission. 

People using this service may have already consulted an architect or builder and could be ready to submit their applications. Or you may simply require guidance as to what is possible. As part of the service we can check over your application and supporting documents. 

You can apply online if you're thinking about a development and your property or site is in the Barnsley borough. We charge a fee to cover our costs. 

We also give pre-application advice for historic buildings and places and extending or altering your property.

Your proposals may also need Building Control approval.

Before you begin

Please read the 'how to pay' tab for details about charges for this service. Make sure you have all the relevant documents listed in the 'what you need' tab.

To make sure you’re eligible for this service you'll need to read the statements below. Only continue if you can answer yes to both of them:

  • you're enquiring about a property or site in the Barnsley borough; and 
  • you're requesting this service for yourself, or on behalf of someone who has given you their permission.

Check out our further information sheet. This can be used to find out more about the level of advice you’ll be given. 

We'll only use personal details for the services we provide to you. You can find more on our privacy policy.

Terms and conditions

Advice given by us for pre-application enquiries does not constitute a formal response or our decision about future planning consents. Views or opinions expressed are given in good faith, and to the best of ability. This is without prejudice to formally consider the planning application.

The application needs to undergo consultation with the public and interested parties. This will also be taken into account when this is determined by us. We can't give guarantees about the final decision that will be made on your planning or related applications. However, we'll consider the advice note when making a decision on future planning related applications.

We'll also consider changes in circumstances and details that could alter the original position. If the advice was given more than three years before submission, little or no weight will be given to it.

If the development also relates to a protected building or site we may need to contact you for further details. This may result in an extra charge. For major developments, in some cases it may be necessary to enter into a planning performance agreement.

What you need

You need to provide details to help us identify relevant planning policies:

  • a location plan (to the scale of 1:2500)
  • a layout plan (to the scale of 1:500)
  • full details of the existing site or buildings

You may also need to back this up with:

  • a full description of the proposal, with drawings
  • any additional drawings, photos or models

The larger the development the more details you’ll need to provide. 

Each document can't be bigger than 15MB and your combined documents must not exceed 75MB in total. You can upload several documents at the same time. If a document is bigger than 15MB or you need to send more than 75MB in total you can:

  • Email them to You should clearly mark the site address in each email title. You can't email documents that are larger than 100MB file size. If your documents are bigger than this then split them over multiple emails.
  • Save them to a CD or submit paper copies at one of our offices. You can also send them to Barnsley Council, PO Box 634, Barnsley, S70 9GG. Clearly mark the CD or plans with the site address and the name of our service - Planning and Building Control. We can't accept .exe or zip files on CD's.

When you fill in the online form you should tell us if your documents have been submitted separately.

How to pay

The amount you pay depends on the type and size of your development. You can see below how much you'll be charged. You need to pay the charge when you apply before we can provide advice.

All fees include VAT. If you need a VAT receipt you'll need to provide an email address in your application. 

Residential developments

  • Five dwellings or fewer: £250
  • Six to 19 dwellings: £750
  • 20 dwellings or more: £1500

Non-residential developments

  • 499 square metres or less of additional floor space: £275
  • 500 to 4999 square metres of additional floor space: £750
  • 5000 square metres or more of additional floor space: £1500

Changes of use (Including HMO's)

  • £200

Other developments not within the above categories

Please email us at providing a brief description of the proposal and total site area. This is to request a quote for the following building works:

  • outline applications
  • plant and machinery
  • county matters (minerals or waste)
  • car parks, service roads or other accesses
  • oil or natural gas.

What happens next

Once you've applied, paid and sent supporting documents.  Then we'll aim to contact you within 28 days.

If we don’t have enough details we may ask you to send through more before we can process your request.