Contaminated land planning guidance

All planning applications have to be considered for potential contamination issues to ensure compliance with the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 (as amended), the national planning policy framework (NPPF) and the city council's unitary development plan (policies saved beyond 21 June 2009). Further guidance on land affected by contamination is set out in the planning policy guidance.

Contamination is a material consideration in the determination of planning applications and the NPPF (paragraph 121) explains development management decisions should ensure that:

  • the site is suitable for its new use taking account of ground conditions and land instability, including from natural hazards or former activities such as mining, pollution arising from previous uses and any proposals for mitigation including land remediation or impacts on the natural environment arising from that remediation and;
  • adequate site investigation information, prepared by a competent person, is presented

Where development is proposed, the developer is responsible for ensuring that the land is safe and suitable for use, for the purpose for which it is intended. This includes assessing the potential for the land to be contaminated due to previous industrial activities, or natural geological conditions. Failing to deal adequately with contamination could cause harm to human health, property and the wider environment.

As a minimum, land should not be capable of being determined as contaminated land under Part 2A of the Environmental Protection Act 1990.

The council's validation checklist identifies the level of information that is required to support all types of planning application, including when the potential for contamination should be investigated. Further guidance produced by the council can also be downloaded at the bottom of this page.

Downloadable documents

If you are unable to view documents of these types, our downloads page provides links to viewing software.

This page was last updated on 3 April 2016

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