Do I Need Planning Permission To Build A Court?

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Permitted Development Rights

The vast majority of OnCourt projects don’t require any planning permission. Courts can usually be installed under permitted development rights (your right to carry out permitted development within your property). Different rules apply over your front garden but elsewhere within the curtilage of your house, there are no restrictions relating to hard surfaces at ground-level.

Rules For Your Property

Specific regulations for your property will differ but as a general guide, the points below indicate when planning should be sought.

Planning permission is not normally required if;

·       Your court is used as part of the enjoyment of your house.
·       The court will be within the residential curtilage (generally garden area) of your house.
·       The installation is located behind the principle (front) elevation of the house, i.e. to the side or rear of your house.

 Planning permission will be required if;                                 

·       Courts are not solely used for the personal enjoyment of your house, i.e. is for commercial purposes.
·       The installation would be located outside the residential curtilage, on a paddock or adjacent field for example.
·       The court is built in the garden of anything other than a house.  Converted houses, apartments, or houses created through the permitted development rights to change use do not enjoy this permitted development right.
·       If you require the installation of fencing, netting or walls more than 2m high, or fronting a highway.
·       Areas are subject to a planning condition, Article 4 Direction or other restriction that limits permitted development rights.
·       Any element of the court would be attached to a listed building or structure within the grounds of a listed building.

Building Courts in Front Gardens

Clients occasionally wish to build courts to the front of their house, between the principle elevation and the highway.  It is generally possible to do this without the need for planning permission. The hard surface must be made of porous materials, or provision must be made to direct run-off water from the hard surface to a permeable or porous area or surface within the curtilage of the dwelling house”. 

Tree Preservation Orders

Any trees which are protected by a Tree Preservation Order, or trees situated within a Conservation Area, could be affected by the court installation. In these cases consent will be required from your local Council.

Planning Applications and Advice

For any further planning advice or assistance with planning applications or advice on establishing the lawfulness of your court, we are happy to recommend our partners in Hampshire at www.hampshireplanningconsultants.co.uk.