Planning Enforcement

Read our Planning Enforcement Charter (PDF)

Planning enforcement tackles a wide range of issues where development has occurred outwith Scottish Planning Legislation. The Scottish Government gives Councils a general discretion to take enforcement action only when it is considered expedient to do so. Any action taken has to be proportionate to the scale of the breach and to the effect that the breach has on local amenity.

Investigation will commence on receipt of any complaint but we would not normally pursue any anonymous complaints. Any enquiries should be sent to planning.enforcement@moray.gov.uk using the Enforcement Complaint Form (PDF) (Word)

Priority will always be given to breaches which involve:

  • unauthorised development causing immediate harm eg road safety;           
  • unauthorised works to listed buildings;
  • unauthorised felling of protected trees;
  • breaches of planning conditions adversely affecting amenity and/or resulting in continuing harm.

Other possible breaches which would merit investigation include:

  • work being carried out without the necessary planning permission;
  • a site or building which is in such a poor condition that it affects residential amenity.
  • an unauthorised change of use of land or buildings;
  • failure to comply with conditions attached to a permission.
  • unauthorised display of advertisements

The fact that unauthorised development has taken place does not automatically mean that enforcement action will be taken and in many cases, matters can be resolved by negotiation or by submission of a retrospective application to regularise the breach.

Any decision taken over what action to take to resolve a breach of planning may be made following consultation with relevant Moray Council departments, eg Transportation, Environmental Health or external organisations such as SEPA or Historic Environment Scotland.

Should it be determined that formal enforcement is necessary, there are various types of Enforcement Notice which can be issued dependent on the type of the breach. Some of these can be appealed and/or may culminate in indirect or direct action with recovery of costs and possibly referral to the courts. Consequently resolution can be prolonged.

Contact Us

Development Management
Environmental Services
The Moray Council
PO Box 6760, Elgin
IV30 9BX

0300 1234561

development.control@moray.gov.uk

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