Privacy Notice for Planning Services

We are a local planning authority. Broadly, our functions include deciding whether to grant or refuse planning permission for buildings and development in the Borough of Dartford and responding to suspected breaches of planning control. We need to collect your personal information to carry out the planning control functions.

Most of the personal information we hold about you is provided by you in your application(s) and supporting document(s) or by you when you respond to consultations on planning applications. The information collected and held will vary and depend on the nature of the service.

Processing activity - we will process personal information relating to:

  • applications (under the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 and Planning (Listed Building and Conservation Areas) Act 1990)
  • permissions/consents
  • refusals
  • consultations
  • objections/comments/representations
  • pre-application advice and guidance
  • appeals against refusal of planning permission and enforcement notices
  • high hedges complaints
  • hedgerow removal notices
  • determining applications for certificates of appropriate alternative development
  • determining applications for hazardous substances consent and revocations
  • applications for works to and removal of trees
  • investigating, enforcing and if applicable, prosecuting for breaches of planning and control and criminal offences related to listed buildings
  • service of notices (town and country planning and listed building and conservation areas)
  • land ownership requisition(s)
  • general correspondence between you and us on matters related to the planning application service

Information requirements - our processing activities may include:

  • your address, telephone number, email address (applicant and/or agent)
  • site address
  • health data
  • ethnicity
  • offence(s) data
  • land ownership details
  • record of fee payments (excluding debit/credit card details)

Lawful bases1- our lawful bases for processing your personal information are:

  • our legal obligation(s) under the Land Compensation Act 1961
  • our legal obligation(s) under the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 and associated regulations**
  • our legal obligations under the Planning (Hazardous Substances) Act 1990**
  • our legal obligations under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990**
  • our legal obligation(s) under the Channel Tunnel Rail Link Act 1996
  • our legal obligation(s) under the Hedgerow Removal Regulations 1997
  • our legal obligation(s) under the Anti-Social Behaviour Act 2003
  • our legal obligations under the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004
  • our legal obligation(s) under the Planning Act 2008
  • our legal obligation(s) under the Town and Country Planning (Development Management Procedure)
  • necessary for the performance of a task in the public interest or in the exercise of official authority vested in us under the legislation referred to above
  • consent (in limited circumstances - see below)

Reasons for processing - some of the information we collect is classified as special category personal data such as health data or personal data consisting of criminal convictions and offences (including alleged offences). This is processed for reasons of substantial public interest under the laws that apply to us (see above) where this helps to meet our broader social obligations such as where it is necessary for us to fulfil our legal obligations and regulatory requirements. We have a Data Protection Policy that sets out how this information will be handled.

Data sharing - we may share your information with a number of other organisations as part of the planning process for example the Planning Inspectorate where an appeal is lodged against our decision, lack of decision or enforcement action taken by the Council.

We may also share information with the police to aid with the detection and prevention of criminal acts.  We may also rely on a number of exemptions, which allow us to share information without needing to comply with all the rights and obligations under the Data Protection Act 2018. Please refer to the Kent and Medway Information Agreement for further details on our sharing arrangements.

If requested, we are required by law to disclose information to the Cabinet Office as part of the National Fraud Initiative.

Our Building Control service has a role in checking that Building Regulations are being complied with. Following your submission of your planning application, our Building Control will contact you to discuss the service it can provide. You will be given the opportunity to opt-out of any further communication from Building Control when you are first contacted and in any subsequent communications. You can do this by clicking the opt-out link at the bottom of Building Control communications or by writing to the address given in its communications.

The Town and Country Planning (Development Management Procedure) (England) Order 2015 (article 40(2) requires us to maintain a statutory public register of every application for permission together with any accompanying plans and drawings. As the application includes applicants’ and/or agents’ names and addresses, this information will be included in this register, which is open to public inspection, at our offices.

If you have submitted an application for a certificate of lawfulness of existing or proposed use or development, your name, address and the address or location of the land to which the application relates will, in accordance with article 40(7) of the 2015 Order, be published in the statutory public register, open to public inspection at our offices. There can be no expectation of confidentiality.

In accordance with article 40(14) of the 2015 Order, we make the statutory public register available on-line, via our Public Access. If you are an applicant or agent, your name and address will be published on-line. In order to protect your personal data from any unnecessary disclosure, we will not publish on-line:

  • personal telephone number and mobile number
  • personal email address
  • signature, unless contained within a submitted report or document where this forms part of an application or is in connection with an appeal to the Planning Inspectorate
  • special category information eg: health data relating to the applicant and/or family
  • other information identified as confidential by the applicant

Public bodies and keepers of statutory registers are permitted to proactively share copyright material online without seeking permission, as long as it is not commercially available. The same applies to material that is already available for public inspection, through some statutory mechanism, such as planning applications.

Objections/representations - when we receive an application, we undertake a period of publicity during which comments on the proposal can be sent to us. We welcome the views of third parties such as local residents and interest groups whether they are for or against a proposal, as they can bring new factors to our attention and add to the quality of the decision made, although we can only take account of planning matters.

The 2015 Order places no requirement on us to publish objections/representations in our statutory public register. However, we consider that the promotion of trust and fairness in the planning system and public participation in the planning process is essential. We also consider that there is a legitimate interest in transparency to both the applicant and the public in understanding the importance and weight to be attached to an objection or representation and to be able to test the veracity of any claims made in relation to an application. There is also a legitimate interest in ensuring that the planning system is not abused by malicious objections etc. We will therefore include in our statutory public register (open for inspection at our offices), the names and addresses of individuals who have objected or submitted representations to an application. There can be no expectation of confidentiality.

In order to protect your personal data from any unnecessary disclosure, we will not publish on-line:

  • your name
  • house number and/or house name
  • personal telephone number and mobile number
  • personal email address
  • signature
  • special category information eg: health data relating to the applicant and/or family

NB:  we will publish your representation, street name and full postcode. However, where we consider that disclosure of an objection or representation could lead to you, or a person connected with you, being subject to intimidation, we will exercise our discretion and not publish online, the objection or representation, including the street name and full postcode.

If an appeal is lodged against:

  • a decision we make;
  • a decision we do not make; or
  • enforcement action taken by the Council,

the Planning Inspectorate will ask for copies of all application correspondence, which may contain some personal information about you, if you have commented, objected to or made representations on an application. This information will also to be made available to the appellant (usually the land owner/developer).

Retention period - the law requires us to maintain the information on the planning register indefinitely and as such, information relating to applications will be available on our website permanently and will retained on the planning file even if not published on the website. Other certain datasets such as enforcement files are kept permanently. Please refer to our Information Asset Register for specific retention periods applying to our Planning Services datasets. Information is held securely and disposed of confidentially.

Right to object - where processing your personal information is required for the performance of a public interest task (see our lawful bases above), you have the right to object on ‘grounds relating to your particular situation’. This right to object is not absolute. We will have to demonstrate why it is appropriate for us to continue to use your personal data.

Changes to this Privacy Notice - we review this Privacy Notice regularly and will place updates on our website.

Please refer to our Corporate Privacy Notice for further details of how we process your personal information and your rights.


1 Note that we may process your personal information on more than one lawful basis depending on the specific purpose for which we are using your information

GDPR/Privacy Notice/Planning Services Privacy Notice February 2020