Council launches new way to stay informed about planning applications

01 Feb 2024

The way Sutton Council notifies residents and businesses about planning applications in their street and local area is changing from 1 March 2024.

As more and more Sutton residents and businesses access council services online, people can now register for the Council’s online planning notification system. The current system of posted notifications to homes in the immediate area of a planning application will be replaced with a more powerful and responsive tool.

The Council will also reach more residents and businesses than is currently possible, by advertising all major planning applications on the Council’s social media channels. This is in response to  how many residents and businesses access information now. By communicating major planning applications in this new way, the Council hopes to both reach a wider audience and allow residents to easily share details about local planning applications with their own networks.

While digital engagement is a great way of reaching more Sutton residents and businesses, the Council recognises that not everyone will have access to the internet or choose to communicate in this way. To ensure those residents and businesses still have an opportunity to get involved and contribute to planning decisions, paper notices will be placed outside all proposed planning application sites in future. 

The new-style site notices will also include a QR code, so that those with a smartphone can directly access the information on-site and comment if they are registered. Sutton residents and businesses also have the option to view paper copies of planning applications at the Civic Offices by appointment. Residents with disabilities that may prevent them from using the online consultation system can also write or call the Council’s contact centre to discuss their needs. 

Councillor David Bartolucci, Chair of the Council’s Housing, Economy & Business Committee, said:
“As more and more of our residents and businesses access council services online, now is the time for as many Sutton residents and businesses as possible to register for our Planning Public Access system. 

“This new system lets you hear about all planning notifications in your local area. There will also be a new feature that allows you to find out about planning applications across the whole borough. We want to make better use of available digital services to enable our communities to have access to more planning information and comment online more easily. 

“Over 11,000 people have already registered in Sutton for this new online planning service. Other improvements are notifications for a chosen geographical area to allow more people to be notified, as well as people with a business interest in Sutton or people with family in the borough to register and keep up with information that they otherwise would not be aware of.

“I hope all residents and businesses will now help communicate these changes to their local networks to ensure as many people as possible are aware of all the service improvements and launch date.”