Do you need planning permission for decking on a flat roof?

Do you need planning permission for decking on a flat roof?

The question is whether or not you are allowed to build a deck on your house if it does not exceed the height limit set out in the Planning Act 1988 (as amended). If so, what is the maximum height that you may build a deck on your home?

There are different opinions regarding the height limit for decking on a flat roof. Some say that you cannot build any higher than the height of the topmost railings. Others say that you may build up to four feet above the level of the lowest railings. Still others say that you may only build one foot above these levels, and no higher.

There is also some disagreement among architects about what constitutes “the highest point” on a flat roof. So which view is correct?

What is the law regarding decking on a flat roof?

In order to answer this question, let us first look at the relevant legislation. Section 35(1) of the Planning Act 1988 states that:

35.

Let’s take a look at the law first. Section 4 of the Planning Act 1988 states:

(1) A person shall not erect or maintain on any land within the limits of his own property— (a) any structure, other than a dwelling-house, intended for human habitation; or (b) anything capable of causing injury to persons or damage to property; except where such structures are required for fire protection purposes. (1) A material contravention of these Regulations shall render the granting authority’s decision invalid.

“The Council” means the local planning authority in England, or the Department of Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs in relation to land in the province of Ulster. (2) Without prejudice to the provisions of subsection (1), a person shall not erect or maintain— (a) any fence, gateway, wall, shed, lattice or trellis-work unnecessary to the enjoyment of his dwelling-house; (b) any mark or notice unnecessary to the enjoyment of his dwelling-house; except where such structures are required for fire protection purposes.

Any structure or object not explicitly allowed by this law is illegal.

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“Dwelling-house” means a building used orinted for use as a dwelling house or number of dwelling houses, and includes a flat, room, set of rooms or set of rooms in a building, used orinted for use as a dwelling house.

“Erection” means the construction of a building or structure capable of being occupied or used.

“Relevant site” means the site on which it is proposed to erect the proposed development. Though decking is not mentioned, we can safely assume that it is illegal to build a raised wooden platform on top of your house without planning permission.

In order to get around this, wannabe Frank Lloyd Wrights have come up with two main arguments. These are:

1. Raised wooden platforms are not included in the law. Therefore, one may be built without the need for planning permission. 2.

“To occupy or used” means to use, or to permit the use of, whether by the owner or any other person.

“To permit” means to sell, let, grant, hire out or otherwise make available for use by another person and “permitting” shall be construed accordingly.

“Building Regulations” means the provisions made by law from time to time regulating the construction of buildings within the meaning of the Interpretation Act (Northern Ireland) 1954. Raised wooden platforms may be considered a type of ‘furniture’ not a structure, and as such, one may be built without planning permission.

Sadly, both of these arguments fail to convince the local authority. Your first argument fails because the law states that anything capable of causing injury or damage is illegal. Raised wooden platforms can certainly do this, as people have fallen off them before. It doesn’t matter that this outcome is rare, it only has to happen once.

The first interpretation can be dismissed out of hand – there is no definition in the law that excludes wooden decks from the law. The second has a little more merit, but I’m not convinced. The phrase “used orinted for use” prevents this loophole.

I have heard of people getting away with it though.

do you need planning permission for decking on a flat roof - remodelingmate.com

What do you think?

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