Category Archives: planning advice

PCMS Design Retained as an Accredited Planning Agent

Monday, April 10th, 2017

CBC Accredited Agent Certificate 2017-18_001For the third year running, PCMS Design has achieved the status of ‘Accredited Planning Agent’ with Central Bedfordshire Council (CBC). This scheme has been created by the Council to recognise continued regular compliance with planning regulations, and also adherence to CBC’s standard Development Management guidelines when submitting planning applications.

To qualify, all applications must be submitted in an accurate and timely manner, with the relevant amount of detail and the correct accompanying information.

Staff from PCMS Design regularly attend planning seminars and consultation sessions at the Council offices, and also have a good working relationship with officers from the local authority. We look forward to this continuing over the forthcoming months, as there are a number of planning applications in preparation for submission.

New Modular Unit for Hadrian Academy

Friday, July 8th, 2016

Hadrian LogoWe have worked on a number of projects for Hadrian Academy in Dunstable, but the latest happened in double-quick time!

We made a planning application to Central Bedfordshire Council on behalf of the school for the installation of a modular classroom unit – the school was seeking a quick response, as they hope to have the new out-of-school classroom ready to use at the beginning of the new school year this September.

Permission was helpfully granted by Central Beds within just 5 weeks, which has enabled the school to move forward with modular suppliers to source and install the classroom. This should happen over the summer holidays.

We can offer advice to anyone thinking about seeking planning permission for a dwelling, business or public sector organisation.

Planning Consent Granted for Thatched Cottage

Thursday, December 4th, 2014

DSC09824 CroppedA Buckinghamshire family was delighted recently to be granted planning consent for extension works to their picturesque thatched home.

Cherry Tree Cottage is a charming house with lots of character. The property has been extended substantially over the years, and the thatched roofs have been maintained across the whole property. Eyebrow dormers over some of the first floor windows add to the quirky and distinctive appearance.

The family’s aspirations included the creation of a porch entrance and boot room and also a total refurbishment and enlargement of their kitchen. Our challenge was to design an extension that not only delivered the desired space on the inside, but also blended harmoniously with the rear gables on the outside. Rather than just enlarging the kitchen, we recommended a two-storey rear extension which would also allow for a bigger bedroom on the first floor. In this way, the appearance of the rear elevation would be enhanced, and not spoiled by a single storey flat roof extension.

A modest single storey side extension was also designed to provide space for the new entrance and boot room.

Following the successful application for planning permission, the family are now very pleased to be able to get on with their improvement project: “We knew what improvements we wanted but were not sure how to achieve them. PCMS Design listened carefully to our plans, and suggested some realistic and workable ideas for extending our home. The application for planning permission went very smoothly and we are looking forward to getting the build underway.”

New Permitted Development Rights for Home Extensions

Thursday, June 6th, 2013


On 30th May 2013 the Government brought in amended planning legislation, for a temporary three year period, which relaxes the permitted development rules for certain types of extension.

A notable feature of this relaxation is that homeowners are now allowed to build larger single-storey extensions to their houses without obtaining full planning consent. In summary, if you live in a semi-detached or terraced property, you can build out by 6 metres from the original rear wall of the house, and if your house is detached you can build out by 8 metres, subject to certain constraints. Different rules apply in Conservation Areas.

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Pre-Application Advice for an Ancillary Dwelling in Brill

Tuesday, April 16th, 2013

PCMS has recently been involved in an interesting feasibility process for a homeowner in the picturesque Aylesbury Vale village of Brill. Grafton House is an imposing property occupying a prominent hill top location. The house has a number of brick outbuildings, and the owner would like to bring one of them – currently used as a store – back into use as an ancillary dwelling.

PCMS carried out background research on the store house and its potential, and drafted some outline designs and drawings to submit to Aylesbury Vale District Council (AVDC) for pre-application planning advice. AVDC agreed that if a planning application was submitted, providing it was for a dwelling that was subordinate to the main house, that it would be highly likely to receive planning consent.

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Wycombe Carpet Centre

Tuesday, August 24th, 2010


PCMS were approached recently by Wycombe Carpet Centre to solve a problem for them. They had outgrown the carpet storage facility on site, and needed to find a way to store additional materials in safe, secure and stable conditions.

We came up with a straight forward solution. The yard to the rear of the shop unit was carefully assessed, and we proposed demolishing the existing shed and replacing it with a purpose built two-storey unit of permanent construction. The new storage unit will be more flexible, and makes available a sizeable increase in storage capacity. This will allow Wycombe Carpet Centre to hold more stock, and consequently offer a better service to customers.

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