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Highways and access

If you are looking to create a new vehicular access or to lower a kerb to create a vehicular crossing over a pedestrian pathway, you will always need approval from the Local Highways Authority to carry out these works and this is separate consent needed from any planning permission that may also be required.  Suffolk County Council is the Highways Authority for Babergh and Mid Suffolk districts. 

You may also need planning permission if the highway involved is a Classified Road.  This in simple terms is a road, which has been given a classification to emphasize its importance to the highway network.  In most cases it involves the road name being prefixed with an A, B or C (for example the A12).  A and B roads are part of the national classification system. C roads, which are also classified roads, are designated by the Suffolk highway authority. 

For any application where the highway is involved, the Highway Authority is a statutory consultee (an organisation or individual that must be consulted by law) in the planning process, and can only make recommendations to the Local Planning Authority (LPA).  The ultimate decision on whether a development is granted planning permission is taken by the LPA.

If the County Council considers that the development will adversely affect the highway, and this impact can’t be reduced, it can recommend that the District Council refuses the planning application. Note: the County Council can’t make the final decision on whether a planning application is approved or refused – this is the District Councils role as LPA.  However, the County Council as Highways Authority may not allow access to the public highway if it considers the proposal to be unsafe regardless of any decision made by the Local Planning Authority in this regard.

The views and decisions by the respective authorities on planning applications must be justified.  In an appeal, they could be judged by the Planning Inspector to have acted unreasonably, and costs could be awarded against them.

In respect of Highway matters please find the links below of use: