Planning Permission

Do you need planning permission to replace your conservatory roof?

One of the easiest and most cost-effective ways of improving your standard of living while increasing the value of your property is to build a conservatory onto the side of your house. Most standard conservatories fall into the category of ‘permitted development scheme’, meaning that they do not need any special planning permission, or need to fall in line with many building regulations. A conservatory does not generally need planning permission unless it is attached to a listed building, in an area of local importance or is likely to concern neighbours for one reason or another.

Do I need to conform to certain building regulations?

Building a conservatory does not require adherence to any special building regulations as long as:

  • The conservatory is built at ground level and no more than 30 square metres in area. 
  • It is separated from the main building by exterior quality walls, doors or windows. 
  • The heating system is totally independent from the main building.

Replacing your conservatory roof shouldn’t require building regulation approval so long as you are not blocking ladder access to a loft or roof extension window, especially if it was designed as a fire escape, for example.

So, do I need planning permission to replace my conservatory roof then?

A conservatory does not normally need planning permission as it is considered a permitted development. There are a number of conditions that need to be met for the conservatory to be exempt from planning permission, but none that affect replacing your roof. This does not mean that you shouldn’t notify your local authority beforehand of your plans though.

As would be expected, if you living in a notable home or in a sensitive area, then you are almost guaranteed to need planning permission from the local authority before you do any sort of work on a listed building. The same would apply if your home is in an area of outstanding natural beauty or a National Park.

What is the Neighbour Consultation Scheme?

If you are planning changes to a large extension then you need to notify the local authority. They, in turn, will notify your neighbours, who then have 21 days to raise any objections to your project. It is the council’s responsibility to notify the neighbours, and if they do not formally object, then you may start working on your project straight away.

Check first!

If you are planning any sort of substantial or structural work to your house you should always check with your local authority about whether you need to comply with any specific regulations. A normal conservatory roof replacement should not need any additional permissions, but it is far easier and safer to get an official go-ahead from the council prior to work commencing anyway.

You need to remember that Scotland and Northern Ireland have different regulations to England and Wales, so, if in doubt, check it out with your local authority. And if you have any other queries or worries about anything to do with your building project, if you check it out earlier, you may save yourself a very inconvenient and expensive issue later on.

In the UK, the go-to site for any planning queries is: