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    Do You Need Planning Permission?

    planning permission

    Many of our customers often ask whether they will need planning permission for work carried out on their home. Here is a quick guide to whether you will need planning permission when improving your home.

    For front gardens, planning permission is not generally needed if your driveway is less than 5 square metres, or you are using a permeable material like gavel, block paving or porous asphalt. For our pattern imprinted concrete installations, which are non-permeable, we will design a drainage system specifically for your needs, so that any rainwater is allowed to drain properly.

    For any patios or side of house parking areas and paths, no planning permission is required as long as there is no significant embanking or terracing built to support a hard surface. When it comes to decking, planning permission is again not required provided it is not raised more than 30cm, and the decking and other external structures don’t cover more than 50% of the total garden area.

    Any walls, fences or gates will not normally need planning permission unless they are over 2 metres high, or over 1 metre tall and next to a highway used for vehicles. Alternatively permission may be needed if you are changing the boundary of a neighbouring listed building. If you live in a listed building yourself, planning permission is usually needed for any indoor or outdoor work on the property.

    If planning permission is necessary, we will provide all the assistance needed to get it. If you would like some no-obligation advice, please contact us here. For more in-depth information, you can look at a handy 3D government guide here.

    Case Study – Minehead Avenue

    The finished Pattern Imprinted Concrete driveway

    The finished Pattern Imprinted Concrete driveway

    Installed at Minehead Avenue, Urmston in mid July 2012, this was an interesting and exciting project for both us and our customer. Our goal was to create a low maintenance and aesthetically pleasing driveway which would incorporate a ramp, with level access for wheelchair use, a decorative planter and new fencing.

    The customer wanted the planter to be constructed from stone and requested that the colour of the stone contrast well with the colour of the Pattern Imprinted Concrete. A lighter grey was chosen to contrast but also to compliment the dove grey that was chosen for the drive. The same colour brick was used to form the access ramp and both were finished with high quality slate. A small step was formed to one side of the ramp base at the request of the customer.

    The customer wanted a cobble pattern so London Cobble was advised due to its more contemporary feel and its shallower depth. Arch top fencing was then installed at both sides of the property to complete a wonderful transformation of the driveway.

    You can see more photos in our case study of the project here

    Case Study – Deepdale Road

    Sunlit Pattern Imprinted Concrete driveway

    Sunlit Pattern Imprinted Concrete Driveway

    Installed at Deepdale Road, Breightmet in mid July 2012, this was a project that was funded by Bolton Council. It was the second project in July where we were set a similar task, to provide a low maintenance and aesthetically pleasing patio which would incorporate a ramp with level access for wheelchair use, and install new fencing.

    To start with the area was uneven and untidy, and was littered with trip hazards. A manhole in the centre of the patio was sunken below concrete and was unsightly and dangerous.

    We began by tidying the area, and the manhole was replaced by a recessed manhole cover. We then used flags on edge to form the access ramp and the step into the back door. The customer wanted a more contemporary pattern with a shallower depth for the Pattern Imprinted Concrete, so walkway slate was recommended and worked well with the overall shape of the patio area. The concrete was also applied to the recessed manhole so that it blended in with the rest of the patio. Finally Waney Lap fencing was erected on the backside of the property to add privacy to the new patio area.

    Beware of the Cowboys – Kensington Street Testimonial

    Mr Khan first contacted us in November 2011 wanting a new pattern imprinted concrete driveway and some fencing put up.  We quoted for both, but Mr Khan decided to use us just for the concrete driveway, as he’d received a more competitive quote for the fencing.  When we arrived last month to install the concrete driveway, we could see the fencing was a complete mess.  Apparently the company that had installed it had no proper equipment and had not quoted for the correct materials.  Mr Khan was very unhappy, and could not get back in touch with the company.

    We installed the driveway and then made attempts to rectify the fencing.  The fencing was nowhere near straight, so it had to be completely redone.  While doing this we got to see the full extent of the mess left behind.  In order to fit the posts in the holes, they had been bashed with a hammer instead of being cut with a chainsaw, and the holes themselves had not been concreted.  We did the best we could and left the fencing looking much better.

    Mr Khan was very pleased with the work, and left us the testimonial below.  Click to enlarge.

    Kensington Street Testimonial

    Install Your Own Fencing – Part 2

    Fence & Gate

    How to install your own fence...

    Continuing from our guide on how to install your own fencing, today we’re covering the process of the actual fence installation.

    • Add 4 to 5 inches of gravel to the hole, spreading it evenly across the bottom.  This allows proper drainage away from the fence posts during rain.
    • Set the first fence post into the hole, and add 6 to 8 inches of soil.  Check the level of the fence post by placing a carpenter’s level on at least 2 sides.  When the fence post is level, tamp the soil to compact it solidly into the hole.
    • Add another 6 to 8 inches of soil, check the level and tamp the soil.  Repeat until you have filled the hole completely.
    • Mound some dirt around the fence post at ground level, rounding it with a trowel.  This will direct rain and snow melt away from the fence post.
    • Place a stake at the location for the next corner fence post.
    • Attach the twine to the fence post, about 6 inches from the ground.  Stretch the twine to the stake, pull it taut and affix it to the stake.  Set the corner fence post and then repeat for the remaining corners.
    • Measure the width of the fence panels and mark the distance with stakes.  Set fence posts at each stake, aligning them with the twine line and mounding soil around them above ground level.
    • Set a fence panel between the first 2 fence posts.  Use wooden wedges to level the panel.  Attach the panel with screws, maintaining the level.

    Repeat attaching the fence panels to the fence posts until the fence is complete. Now, you can look back in awe at the brilliant fencing you have just created. Next on the list, a pattern imprinted concrete drive or patio perhaps?

    If you don’t fancy the DIY option, get in touch for a free no-obligation quote.

    Complete Driveway Designs Ltd

    The Yard, Stubbins Lane, Ramsbottom, BL0 0PT
    E:info@northwest-driveways.co.uk
    T: 01706 827180

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