Search, view & comment on planning applications

Use Public Access to find planning applications, view them and make comments.

Public Access is our online planning applications register. It contains applications back to 1974.

Search Public Access if you want to:

  • comment on a current application*
  • find application details
  • view documents/plans/decision notices
  • view the name of the Case Officer
  • find sites on an interactive map
  • view/create weekly lists
​Anyone can use Public Access to view planning applications but *you have to register and be logged in to comment on an application or use some of the system’s more advanced features such as tracking the progress of an application, saving your searches and receiving email notifications of applications you may be interested in. The Public Access User Guide provides further advice on how to use this system.

We are unable to provide paper copies to view.
The system requires a lot of maintenance and can occasionally go offline. If we are aware of a problem with public access, we will issue an alert on the council alerts page and will aim to fix it as soon as possible. Please note: we are unable to provide paper copies of applications to view.

Please read the Public Access User Guide for advice on how to use this system.

Having trouble finding an application?
  • Try the 'Advanced' search tab for more options.
  • If you dont know the address or reference number - try finding the application site using the 'map' tab.
  • Applications withdrawn by the applicant/agent will not be shown. 
  • Applications will not appear if they are 'invalid'. This means we are still waiting for information from the agent/applicant. Once made 'valid' they will appear.
  • Applications received before 1974 are not on Public Access. To request these historic applications please see the 'Historic planning applications' section below.
Having trouble commenting on an application?
  • You must have registered and be logged in to add comments. To do this, please go to the ‘login’ tab at the top of the Public Access page.
  • If the consultation date has ended you cannot comment online. Consultation expiry dates can be found in the ‘Important Dates’ section of the 'Details' tab.
  • If you are unable to provide comments online you can email your comments to or send written comments to: Central Registry Team, Development Management, County Hall, Morpeth, Northumberland, NE61 2EF.
If you are experiencing technical difficulties with Public Access please email and we will try to assist you.
Planning applications and decision notices back to 1974 are available to view on Public Access.

If you require an historic application received before 1974 requests can be made by email to the planning reference number and full site address including postcode (a map showing the site would be helpful if you have one). If the paper record is available our Planning File Request Team will locate it and upload the appropriate information to Public Access. They will notify you by email when it is available to view. Please allow 10 working days.

Please note: we are unable to provide paper copies of applications to view.
You do not need to have received a letter from us or even live near the application site to comment on a planning application.

An application will normally be open for comment for a period of 21 days after neighbours have been notified of the application, or after a site/press notice has been issued. 

Use our Public Access system to view the application and comment online.

You must have registered and be logged in to add comments. To do this, please go to the ‘login’ tab at the top of the Public Access page. If you are unable to comment online you can post your comments to Central Registry Team, Development Management, Northumberland County Council, County Hall, Morpeth, Northumberland, NE61 2EF (your name and address must be provided for your comment to be accepted). 

We do not acknowledge/respond to comments due to the number we receive. If your comment includes a question for the Case Officer please send this directly to or for the attention of the Case Officer to The name of the Case Officer for a current application can be found on our Public Access system (further information tab). It takes roughly 5 days to allocate a Case Officer to an application so please allow this time before checking.
The council can only take land use planning issues into account when it makes a decision on an application. These are known as ‘material considerations’ and will vary depending on the proposal and site circumstances, but may include:
  • The council's planning policies
  • Central government planning guidance
  • The size, appearance, layout and density of the proposed development
  • Daylight, sunlight and overshadowing
  • Overlooking or loss of privacy
  • Means of access, parking, servicing, traffic generation, highway safety
  • Impact on landscape and ecological habitats
  • Effect on listed buildings, conservation areas and archaeology
  • Noise and disturbance
  • Air quality and odours
  • Contamination
  • Flood risk
  • Renewable energy, sustainability of proposed development
  • Crime prevention and community safety
The following are matters which the council cannot take into account:
  • Private property matters such as boundary and access disputes, rights to light, restrictive covenants, capacity of private drains, damage to property during construction
  • Effects on property value
  • Trade competition
  • Loss of view
  • Building Regulations matters such as structural safety and fire prevention and matters covered by other laws such as alcohol or gaming licences
  • The applicant's personal conduct, history or motives
By law, all comments received in response to planning applications will form part of the application documentation and must be open for public inspection (please read our Privacy Notice for further details on how we use your information). Your name and address must be provided for your comment to be accepted, these will be displayed along with your comment (which we publish without change). However signatures, personal telephone numbers and email addresses will be removed/redacted.

Concerns about personal/sensitive information
Before submitting your comment it is your responsibility to ensure you do not include any information that could compromise the security of yourself, others or any premises (e.g. information about vulnerable persons, holiday dates or details of when a property is left empty). If you are concerned about your details or the content of your comment appearing on our public register please email your comment to and make your concerns clear (do not submit it online).
I want my comment removing completely
If you change your mind about the comment you have sent us and want it removing we need you to inform the Case Officer via email / by post (please include the same email/postal address you used when making the comment).  This is to stop people asking us to remove your comments without your permission.

What will happen to my comment?
Please be assured that all material planning issues raised will be taken into account. Defamatory information will not be considered or published. Your comment will not be acknowledged as replies to individual concerns are not possible due to the large numbers we receive throughout the year. 

Your comment will be made publicly available on our website and stored electronically with the application. It will be passed to the Case Officer responsible for assessing the application. All relevant comments will be considered by the Case Officer before they recommend a decision. Most decisions will be made at officer level, under the council’s delegated powers scheme. However, some applications will be determined by members at the relevant planning committee due to their controversial nature or consultation response. Futher information is available on the planning application process
Changes can be made to a planning application during its assessment. If material changes which alter or affect the proposals are made to the application during the process, a period of 14 days is usually given to residents, consultees and those who have commented, to provide any further comments on the changes. Minor changes which do not change or alter the development or its impacts will not normally result in additional consultation.

If you have made written representations on the application that will be heard at committee, we will write to you and give you the opportunity to speak at the Strategic Planning Committee meeting.

If you have objected to an application and it goes to an appeal, any comments you have made will be passed on to the planning inspector appointed by the Secretary of State as part of the appeal process. The Planning Inspectorate may also make submitted information available online.

Will I be notified of the decision?
No. However, a copy of the planning officer’s report and council’s decision notice is made available on the Public Access system once a decision has been made and issued to the applicant(s).
What should you do if you suspect someone is carrying out buildings works without planning permission?

Some works can be carried out without requiring planning permission, this is known as permitted development. The Planning Portal common projects section provides a general guide to common building works not requiring permission.

However, some people do fail to ask for the necessary permission before carrying out works or starting an activity.  Others may receive planning permission but fail to act in compliance with the permission or some conditions that may have been imposed on the decision notice. The Planning Enforcement Service investigates these suspected breaches of planning control.

Before reporting a suspected breach you can check if an application has been made and what the conditions are on the decision notice using our Public Access system. If you don't find an application or suspect the applicant has not complied with those conditions you can report a suspected breach.