When it comes to adding fences to properties, many homeowners in the UK find themselves navigating a maze of planning regulations and local rules. If you're considering putting up 6ft fence panels in your front garden, it's essential to understand the legalities and guidelines to ensure compliance and avoid potential disputes with neighbours or the council. This blog post aims to provide a thorough overview of what you need to know before erecting a 6ft fence in your front garden in the UK.

Understanding Planning Permissions

In the UK, most fences, gates, and garden walls do not require planning permission if they meet certain criteria. However, there are specific restrictions and conditions you must be aware of, especially for front garden fences.

Height Restrictions

For front gardens, there is a height restriction that plays a crucial role in determining whether you'll need planning permission. Generally, if your fence in the front garden or any garden fencing facing a road is going to be over 1 metre (approximately 3.3 feet) high, you will need to apply for planning permission.

Given that a 6ft fence (roughly 1.83 metres) substantially exceeds this height limitation, obtaining planning permission becomes a necessary step before installation.

Other Considerations

  • Listed Buildings: If your home is a listed building or located in a designated area (such as a conservation area, an area of outstanding natural beauty, a national park, or a World Heritage Site), additional restrictions may apply. In such cases, even lower fences might require permission.
  • Visibility: Erecting a tall fence, like a 6ft one, in your front garden could potentially obstruct sightlines for drivers or pedestrians, which is a concern for local planning authorities. It’s advisable to consult with them to ensure your proposed fence doesn’t pose a safety hazard.

How to Apply for Planning Permission

Should you need to apply for planning permission, here’s a brief overview of the steps involved:

  1. Pre-application Advice: Some local councils offer pre-application advice services, which can provide valuable feedback on your proposal before you officially submit your application.
  2. Submission: Submit your planning application through the Planning Portal or directly to your local council's planning department. Ensure your application includes all required documents and diagrams detailing the fence's dimensions and location.
  3. Fees: Be prepared to pay a fee for your planning application. The cost can vary depending on your local council's pricing structure.
  4. Decision: The council will take several weeks to process your application. They may approve it as is, approve it with conditions, or deny it. If denied, you have the right to appeal.

Engaging with Neighbours

Before proceeding with your fencing project, consider discussing your plans with your neighbours. A 6ft fence in the front garden can significantly impact the appearance of the street and potentially affect your neighbours' enjoyment of their property or their own views. Addressing any concerns they might have upfront can help prevent disputes.

Final Thoughts

While erecting a 6ft fence in your front garden in the UK is possible, it requires careful consideration of planning regulations and a respectful approach towards your neighbours. By understanding the legal requirements and obtaining the necessary permissions, you can ensure that your fencing project aligns with both your vision and legal standards.

Before making any decisions or starting work, it’s always a good idea to consult with your local council's planning department. They can provide the most current information and specific advice relevant to your property and area.