Highways development management

The highway authority is a statutory consultee of the planning process.

The highways development management team is responsible for dealing with planning applications for new development, and the associated transport and highways outcomes. The service covers:

  • Pre-application advice. 
  • Undertaking consultation responses for new developments. 
  • Securing and delivering works in the existing highway. 
  • Securing and delivering new highways. 
  • Arranging the processing of the supervision of vehicular access. 

The following documents provide highway advice on planning applications and pre-planning enquires: 

Guidance to paving front gardens.pdf 

639 KB (.pdf) 

Manual For Streets, March 07.pdf 

5 MB (.pdf) 

Parking standards 1996 Document 

136 KB (.doc) 

Residential roads and footpaths in Northumberland.pdf 

24 MB (.pdf) 

Where a residential development of 100 dwellings or more is proposed, a full transport assessment will be required. For developments of 50 dwellings or more, a transport statement will be expected. In all cases, a travel plan or travel plan framework should accompany the transport reports. 

We negotiate and agree new road proposals for adoption as part of section 38 of the Highways Act 1980
View further guidance on Section 38 Agreements and the fees involved.   

The Northumberland County Council (NCC) technical specification for Highways Works provides those undertaking works on the public highway with the information to ensure that construction works when carried out that fulfil the criteria will be considered as being to an adoptable standard. Applicants are responsible for entering into legal agreements for any intended works on the existing public highway or highways adoptions. 
The technical specification is not a highway design guide and the foreword provides guidance on nationally set design documents that should inform how scheme design is approached and developed. 
Click here to read the specifiction for Highways works


Section 59 of the Highways Act 1980 relates to the recovery of expenses due to extraordinary traffic. It provides for the highway authority to recover the cost of excess expenses incurred in repairing roads damaged by an operator causing excessive weight or extraordinary traffic to pass along a highway. In determining whether a development would result in extraordinary traffic, NCC as Highway Authority advises that the following criteria are taken into account: 
  •   Is the site directly accessed via an unclassified, C  or 'B' class road 
  •   Are there any weight, height or width limit restrictions along the access route 
  •   Is there a bridge or structure along the access route 
  •   Assessment of the need for repairs arising from an operators use of a section of highway, exceeding the use that would otherwise be expected to occur.  
Click here to see Section 59 of the Highways Act 1980 

As part of development proposals, there may be a need to stop or divert highways or public rights of way. When related to a planning permission stopping up can be taken up under the Town and Country Planning Act. 
Applicants for stopping up under section 247 can be submitted alongside planning applications. The department for transport casework team will continue to process and determine stopping up applications under section 247, 248, 249 and 251 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990. 

  A planning permission does not offer a guarantee that a stopping up order will be successful and a stopping up order cannot be made without a valid planning permission. 


Information and access to forms in relation to stopping up associated with planning applications can be found in the following locations: 


To discuss stopping up and diversions in relation to planning applications, please contact highwaysplanning@northumberland.gov.uk 

  Current consultations 

The following document provides advice on road safety audits. 

Road safety audits are necessary where changes to the local highway network are proposed as a consequence of either the access arrangement (s278 works) or off-site highway improvements (s38 works), in respect of a development scheme. 
To arrange an audit, please call 01670 622979.