01245 835855

About the Company

GPO Designs specialises in planning applications, building drawings and plans for house extensions, loft conversions and conservatories.


  • Weekend & Evening Appointments
  • Fixed Prices
  • No Hidden Extras
  • Appointments 7 days/ week 8am-8pm
  • Free initial advice
  • Nationwide service
  • Based in Chelmsford, Essex

    Learn more about the company ...

Other Information

Building Plans produced for Loft Conversions
Interactive planning guide from the Planning Portal

Building Control Applications


Most building works (with a few notable exceptions) require Building Regulations Approval.


There are two main routes to this, these are through the submission of either a Building Notice or a Building Control Full Plans Application.





 GPO Designs offer two Building Control Application Services ...


 Building Notice Application Service - for only 600.


 Building Control Full Plans Application Service - for only 1,100.



Building Notice Application Service


A Building Notice is a written notice that you intend to carry out building work. This can be done without the need to submit detailed drawings. More information may sometimes be requested by the Local Authority Building Control Officer to ensure that your work is in line with the regulations.


A Building Notice is ideal for minor residential alterations and/or extensions. No formal approval of plans is given and the work is assessed mainly through site inspection.  As no prior approval is given you must be confident that the work undertaken on site will comply or you risk having to correct it at the request of the Local Authority.  This approach can be very successful with a reputable builder/contractor who will have completed many projects with similar construction.


Officially work may commence only 48 hours after giving the Building Notice. You must also tell the Building Control Officer at certain key stages within the work to enable inspections to be carried out. 


Building Notices cannot be used in some situations (e.g. building within close proximity of public (not private) sewers). GPO Designs can provide  informal advice on this (though of course only the Local Authority can offer a formal decision).


GPO Designs can produce and submit your Building Notice for only 600. This excludes the Local Authority Building Notice Fee which is priced based on the type and/or scale of the works, and excludes any third party services (such as Structural Engineer's calculations).

(Terms and Conditions apply. Offer only available where we have produced the Planning Application.)


Building Control Full Plans Application Service


The Full Plans Application process requires the production of fully detailed plans providing details of the construction materials (including dimensions and strengths), detailed specifications and structural calculations. The Local Authority then review the plans for compliance with the Building Regulations and providing the plans are compliant (and complete) they permit work to proceed in accordance with the plans. The Local Authority inspects the work as it proceeds at the same stages as they do with the Building Notice.


Full Plans Applications are highly recommended for new build projects and for very complex projects. They are essential where Building Notices are not permitted.


GPO Designs typically take two weeks to complete a Full Plans Application and Local Authorities take around five to eight weeks to review and approve the plans.


GPO Designs can produce and submit your Full Plans Building Application for only 1,100. This excludes the Local Authority Building Control Full Plans Application Fee which is priced based on the type and/or scale of the works. Structural calculations (where required) will be subject to additional charges. (Terms and Conditions apply. This offer is only available where we have produced the Planning Application.)


Choosing between Building Notices and Full Plans Applications

When considering whether to choose the Building Notice or Full Plans Application route please bear in mind that whilst Full Plans Applications give the most complete solution a Building notice may be sufficient for the following reasons:


  1. Reputable building contractors will have undertaken many similar projects and may have their own preferred construction techniques.
  2. Full Plans Applications can add significantly to the planning/build timetable. Typically the full plans are not produced until after Planning Permission is obtained. It then takes around two to three months before the plans are finally approved. The approved plans should only then be submitted to your potential building contractors to obtain quotations. (It is sensible to wait for the plans to be approved prior to obtaining quotes as otherwise any changes may be seen as an addition and may lead to an increased quote.)
  3. The Building Control Full Plan Application takes much longer to prepare and therefore costs more than the Building Notice Application.
  4. The same total fee is due to the Local Authority regardless of whether a Building Notice or Full Plans Application is submitted.
  5. Even where Full Plans are prepared and submitted the building contractor may disregard the plans and implement alternative construction materials with agreement with the Building Control officer (and with the client).


Copyright 2019 GPO Designs Ltd, Registered in England and Wales, Registration Number 7459622. Registered Office: 8 Willow Grove, South Woodham Ferrers, Chelmsford, Essex, CM3 8RA.
GPO Designs Ltd: Planning for your property