Pre-application advice

Get pre-application planning advice on your minerals, waste or county council planning proposal

This content relates to minerals, waste and county council development proposals only. If you want advice on another kind of proposal, please see our Planning advice and guidance page.

As the minerals and waste planning authority, we’re responsible for determining planning applications:

  • relating to minerals and waste
  • for developments carried out by us or on our behalf
  • for developments on land we own or have a significant interest in

The last two examples are also known as ‘Regulation 3’ applications.

We can advise on:

  • whether planning permission is required for a development
  • what the relevant considerations are
  • what information should accompany an application to ensure it’s valid

Pre-application discussions help us make sure that development in Essex:

  • fulfils the community’s needs
  • meets local and national planning objectives

How to obtain pre-application advice

See our pre-application charging schedule and guidance (PDF, 790.43MB) for details of services and costs.

Use the Request for planning advice online form - minerals and waste to request a service.

Please complete the form following the guidance. You should pay the fee using our Minerals and waste payments online form.

Please note with effect from 1 April 2023 Essex County Council has raised pre-application planning advice fees to take into account inflation rises over the last year and increased costs.


Contact the County Planning Development Management Team



County Planning Development Management Team Essex County Council County Hall Chelmsford CM1 1QH

Planning Performance Agreements

A Planning Performance Agreement (PPA) is ideal for larger, more complex proposals. A PPA is an agreement between a local planning authority and an applicant. It provides a project management framework for handling major planning applications.

If your proposal is suited to a PPA, the planning officer dealing with your pre-application advice request will discuss this with you. This will usually be at your first meeting.

Pre-application advice will help you:

  • submit a complete, accurate application
  • follow the relevant policies, plans and guidance

However, officers advising cannot guarantee that your application will succeed. A decision will only be made following:

  • receipt of a formal planning application
  • a detailed assessment of the case

This includes consultations with:

  • adjoining occupiers
  • statutory consultees bodies
  • other interested parties

Where advice is not followed, your application is likely to be determined without further negotiation. See Determining planning applications for more about the decision-making process.

For more information, please get in touch using the contact details above.