Planning permission is not always needed to carry out certain types of development. Some small household extensions, additions and alterations are known as 'permitted developments', which means that planning permission is not needed.
The most common types of permitted development are extensions to dwelling houses, which are subject to various limits and restrictions such as their height, size and location.
For some permitted development rights, the planning authority has to give its 'prior approval'. For example, prior approval is needed for agricultural permitted development or for some telecommunications equipment.
Please note that permitted development rights do not usually apply for listed buildings and surrounding areas, in conservation areas, or in specially protected areas such as Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and National Parks.
Local planning authorities have the power to take away permitted development rights in specified areas by using something called an 'Article 4 Direction'.
Permitted development rights are provided by a legal document called the 'General Permitted Development Order 1995'. This sets out the rules and limits for developments that do not require planning permission. You can see the General Permitted Development Order 1995 by clicking here.