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What Types of Planning Permission Do I Need for a Conservatory Roof?

Posted by Clare Whitehall on Mar 09, 2021

The idea of applying for planning permission often brings a sense of foreboding. Loads of paperwork, unwelcome admin, dealing with technical jargon and red tape – is it even worth it?

It’s no wonder then that one of the most frequently asked questions and concerns we hear from people considering a conservatory roof conversion is whether they need planning permission.

The simple, short answer is no – as long as they stay within the guidelines.

But in order to answer this question fully, we need to ask what exactly planning permission is, and what it entails when converting your conservatory.

What is Planning Permission?

When considering a conservatory roof replacement, one thing you want to be assured of is that your new structure conforms to planning regulations.

The last thing homeowners want when planning any building works on their property is the local authority demanding that it be pulled down or fixed after it’s finished. Not to mention the potential fines and extra costs that may incur.

That’s why getting planning permission before construction is often sought. Not only to make sure the structure is sound and built to a high standard, but also to avoid trouble later down the line.

However, one thing we can all agree on is that planning permissions can be confusing,especially when it comes to conservatories, sunrooms and orangeries. Luckily, there's a number of ways in which a conservatory can be built without the necessity of full planning permissions.

Couple planning a conservatory roof conversion (1) 2

Here’s how:

Planning Permissions Broken Down:

Planning permission asks, "Am I allowed to build this extension?" As the homeowner you have "Permitted Development Rights" which allow you to build single-storey extensions as follows:

  • At the front of the property: you may extend up to 3 square metres.
  • At the side of the property.
  • At the rear of the property.
  • The width can be of any length so long as the building does not extend past the front and/or rear elevation walls.
  • The projection can be up to 50% of the width of the house.
  • The width can be any length so long as the building does not extend past the side elevation walls.
  • The projection allowed for detached properties is 4 metres.
  • For every other type of property the projection is 3 metres. 

If your proposed extension work stays within these restrictions, you will probably be able to go ahead and build without the extra hassle of applying for planning permission.

Sometimes however, permitted development rights can be removed:

The Planning Portal offers advice about when permission is required and how to do so. This is a government website used for accessing planning and building regulations within both England and Wales.

We strongly agree with their advice that you should contact your local planning authority and discuss the details for your proposal before getting any solid plans in place.

They will be able to inform you of any reason why the development may not be permitted and if you need to apply for planning permission for all or part of the work.

Prior Notification – a simplified form of Planning Permission

The guidelines above have eased a little in recent years with the introduction of "Prior Notification". Prior Notification is a much simpler form of planning permission and the forms are straightforward and easy to complete.

This is because unlike with full planning permission, there is no requirement for full architectural plans. An outline plan will suffice and can be downloaded from the internet here.

Prior Notification allows a homeowner to project 4-8 metres into the garden with a detached property, and 3-6 metres for all other property types.

Therefore, full planning permission is now only required on single-storey extensions over 8 metres’ projection for detached properties, and over 6 metres for all other properties.

Couple learning more about planning for their conservatory roof conversion 2

Don't Forget the Building Regulations Approval!

While planning permissions may not be necessary for your conservatory roof conversion, one thing is sure — building regulations approval definitely is!

Building regulations approval is a separate approval process from planning permissions and this cannot be skipped.

Some dishonest conservatory roofing companies may tell you that Building Regulations Approval is not needed for a conservatory roof conversion — in hopes that their inferior roofing is not discovered by the LABC.

We are here to tell you that ALL conservatory roof conversion projects — no matter how small or large your conservatory roofing project.

The Guardian Warm Roof

All of the roofs made by Guardian are fully LABC approved. So the process for applying for building regulations approval is fast and easy. In fact, as a responsible conservatory roof installer, Projects 4 Roofing carries out the relevant applications for you.

That takes the stress and admin away from you, the homeowner. Because we have so much experience dealing with local authorities and working with building regulations, it makes sense for us to take care of it on your behalf.

That leaves you to enjoy your new solid roof conservatory without worry.

In addition, the room under a Guardian Warm Roof will feel like an extension but with much better natural daylight as you’ll be able to keep your conservatory windows and doors.

Happy couple planning a conservatory roof conversion 2

More information on Planning Permission

It’s worth noting that as the homeowner, the responsibility for complying with building regulations and planning permission is ultimately yours. So even though we can advise you and do most of the work for you, it can’t hurt to be familiar with the ins and out of the process.

If you would like more detailed information on the building regulations, the Planning Portal has all additional information on their website. Contact your local building authority if you would like more specific information on your local area. Alternatively, speak to a conservatory roof conversion expert:

Choose Projects4Roofing

If you're considering replacing your conservatory roof, we can help. Here at Projects4Roofing, we are Guardian roofing specialists and when you choose to work with us, you'll be sure to get a completely reliable and efficient roof conversion.

We have a reputation for providing a professional and reliable service thanks to our polite and friendly staff. We're also members of the National Federation of Roofing Contractors, Competent Roofer Schemes, we are Team Guardian Approved and affiliated with Trustmark.

So when you want to insulate your conservatory and replace that cold, leaky polycarbonate conservatory roof, we'll provide you with an impressive service of the highest quality.

With a head office in Newmarket, Cambridgeshire, we can serve the entire region, including Cambridge, Newmarket, Bury St Edmunds, Ely, Huntingdon, St Ives, St Neots, Royston, Saffron Walden, Haverhill, Sudbury and the surrounding areas.

Be sure to get in touch with a member of our team on 01638 778 335 or fill in our contact form online. Our highly trained and expert team will be more than happy to advise you on the next steps you need to take in order to get the home of your dreams!

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Topics: Solid Conservatory Roof Systems, conservatory roof replacement, Guardian Warm Roof, Blog, Planning Permission