Building Plan-3

Planning application process improved to help tackle the climate emergency and plan for a greener future

The planning application process has been updated by Cotswold District Council to ensure any new applications better consider the local environment and biodiversity of their area; while also making the process more user-friendly for residents.

Cabinet Member for Development Management and Licensing, Councillor Juliet Layton, said: 

“By changing our checklists and improving our guidance, applicants across the district will have a better experience of submitting planning applications and improve the likelihood of applications being validated first time.”  

“As a council we are always looking for ways to improve the services that we provide. This change will do just that for our planning application process, making the whole submission process a more positive experience.”

The changes, which came into effect on the 1st of February, impact the Validation Checklists; which outline the information required by applicants so that their planning submission can be considered ‘valid’ by the council. There are various documents that are required by law to accompany a planning application; so ensuring these checklists are as clear as possible is vital.

A review showed that some 40% of applications were not validated because of missing or inadequate information. Therefore, by changing these checklists it’s hoped applicants will be more successful in their provision of the correct information, saving them time and resources. 

In addition to this, there’ll also be new requirements implemented that mean applications will have to consider the impact they are having on local biodiversity and the environment. This means they will have to provide information on the environmental impact of their developments, such as:

  • Biodiversity Statements.
  • Energy and Climate Statements.
  • Sewage and air quality impact assessments.

This aims to bring the process in line with the council's commitment to tackling the climate emergency. 

Cabinet Member for Climate Change and Forward Planning, Councillor Rachel Coxcoon, said: 

“It’s great to see our council make another change in the pursuit of a greener future. All applicants, from small to large housing developments, will have to consider impacts on the local environment more in their housing.”

“It is important that any new development at any level considers the impact on the local environment if we are to make headway in reducing our carbon footprint and protecting wildlife. If we are to make a difference we need to be planning for a more sustainable future and these updates to our processes will help those submitting planning applications to more comprehensively work through the environmental impacts of their proposals.”

We anticipate that applications will come to us with correct supporting documents, however, we will advise and guide applicants during a short period of transition, as the new validation checklists become more familiar.

The updated validation lists and all planning related information can be found on our website here -

Contact Information

Cotswold District Council Communications Team