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When and how you can comment on a called-in planning application.

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First published:
9 January 2019
Last updated:


Your local planning authority makes decisions on planning applications. Welsh ministers have the power to direct the local planning authority to refer an application to it for decision. This is a ‘called-in’ application.

There’s no further fee when an application is called-in.

The local planning authority will tell you that the application has been called-in (a notice of reference).

You should read the Planning Inspectorate’s procedural guide. It provides full details of the Planning Inspectorate’s requirements and expectations.

What happens when an application has been called-in

When your application is called-in, the Local Planning Authority will send a copy of the application and all accompanying documents and plans to the Planning Inspectorate. 

You may choose to provide a full statement of case within 4 weeks of the notice:

You can post or email them to the Planning Inspectorate.

The Planning Inspectorate
Crown Buildings  
Cathays Park
CF10 3NQ

As soon as the Planning Inspectorate receives these documents (or the 4 weeks expire), the timetable for the submission of evidence will be set.

Comment on a called-in planning application

Anyone can comment on or, at the discretion of the appointed Inspector, take part in an inquiry on a called-in planning application. Find the case on the Appeals Casework Portal. The deadline for comments will be in accordance with the timetable. Your local planning authority must tell anyone who has commented on the application (‘interested parties’) that it has been called-in. They have to do this within 1 week of the initial letter from the Planning Inspectorate.

Read the detailed guidance about making your representations

After the event has been held

The Inspector will write a report which will contain his or her conclusions and recommendation on whether planning permission should be granted (with or without conditions) or refused. The report will be sent to the Welsh Ministers to make the decision taking into account the Inspector’s recommendation. When the Welsh Minister has reached a decision, this will be explained in the decision letter. This letter will normally be sent by the Planning Directorate of Welsh Government.

If anyone behaves unreasonably

You can apply for an award of costs if anyone involved in your called-in planning application has cost you money by behaving unreasonably, eg missing deadlines. You can have costs awarded against you too.

You can complain about how the Planning Inspectorate handled your called-in planning application. There’s no time limit for complaints.

If you disagree with the minister's decision

You can challenge the decision in the High Court if you think the Planning Inspectorate made a legal mistake.

Get advice from a lawyer if you’re unsure about this.