Planning Process

The planning process can appear a very complex one fraught with confusion over the laws and policies which are involved. Obtaining a successful planning permission can be hampered by the unfortunate fact that planning is often as much about politics as it is about policy.

At Greenwood Bell we have decades of experience in dealing with all sorts of planning applications and we are well-versed in the laws and the nuances of this lengthy and frustrating process. The governing policies are not always hard and fast and constraints differ from one Council to another. However, with our sound and experienced advice, the procedure need not be the stressful and problematic ordeal many property owners and developers find it to be.

With regard to the politics side of the process, even the smallest of developments benefit from an early dialogue with neighbours and local stake holders. A neighbour who is aware of a development and who feels part of the planning process is likely to be far more supportive. NIMBY actions are often the result of parties feeling ignored or marginalised. GWB’s policy is to always engage at the earliest opportunity.

However, the matter is not just about the political side of things and the need to engage with neighbours, the community and community leaders. It is also very much about the delivery of the application in terms of having quality design, a powerful presentation and having considered all options. We can help all of our clients develop their planning applications and to  ensure that they are robust and stand scrutiny. We are able to offer advice to really enhance the presentations made as part of the planning application and consultation process. We are very versed in interpreting National and District policies and monitor same as these frequently change. Our best piece of advice is to be prepared to be flexible. However we assure all our clients that at Greenwood Bell, we always stick to the brief given and stay true to your aims and objectives to see you achieve the vision you have.

A successful planning application will increase the value of your property and or offer potential for additional space. Because of the high stakes involved it is important to get the process right from the very start.

Our experience in master-planning encapsulates the ideals set out in the Government’s Planning Policy Statement PPS3 “creating places, streets and spaces which meet the needs of people, are visually attractive, safe, accessible, functional, inclusive, have their own distinctive identity and maintain and improve local character” and “Promoting designs and layouts which make efficient and effective use of land, including encouraging innovative approaches to help deliver high quality outcomes”.

We highly recommend getting specialist advice because it is cost-effective. In the long run it can save a lot of time, effort and money as your application is far more likely to be approved when you use a company like Greenwood Bell which has such experience in submitting the best possible applications.

We are proud to say that we believe we have achieved the goals we have set as can be seen from the links below.



No matter how large or small a successful planning application must include good design. Design is just one of our many areas of expertise where we will carefully consider the layout, density, scale, appearance and choice of materials in order to meet your brief as well as the local planning authority policies and guides.

Emerging demographics often shape strategic design and GWB work with a number of Housing Associations on specialist designs for the provision of Care and Extra Care accommodation for the elderly. More recently this specialism has led us into the development of Extra Care Villages.

Below are a few examples of work carried out.


Planning Applications

Barley Cottage

Care and Extra Care


Master Planning


Lye Lane