acknowledge any complaint made in writing within three working days of receiving it;
keep your details confidential during the investigation. Any comments you make on any planning application will be publically available. If we have to go to court to take legal action, we will talk to you about this if it is necessary;
visit the property to find out if a breach of planning control has taken place, what harm it is causing and how it might be resolved;
interview the owners/occupiers of the property, and sometimes contact you to discuss the problems it is causing you;
investigate as soon as possible, although priority will be given to complaints about, for example, unauthorised works to a listed building, or removal of a protected tree. These will be visited within three days. Other cases will be visited within 21 days; and
inform you of the outcome.
Sometimes the investigation can take a while, for example when trying to find out if a property is being used for business uses. We may have to serve legal notices on the owners to find out more information. See our Enforcement page to find out more about planning enforcement procedures.