Our guide to developing in Bournemouth

Bournemouth Town Hall

Ah beautiful Bournemouth, our “home” local authority, a resort town which surely needs little introduction. Bournemouth is an almost entirely urban authority at the centre of the wider south east Dorset conurbation. Bournemouth is a unitary authority meaning that the Borough Council handles all local authority functions including all responsibility for planning and transport.




Latest News from Bournemouth

Approved: erection of a new mixed-use building on Pokesdown High Street, Bournemouth

Bournemouth Borough Council: Pure Town Planning are delighted to have recently secured planning perm[...]

Won at appeal: retrospective planning permission for boundary fencing in Moordown, Bournemouth

Bournemouth Borough Council: Pure Town Planning are pleased to announce a successful appeal win for [...]

Approved: certificate of lawfulness for use of former hotel as HMO in Bournemouth

Bournemouth Borough Council: Pure Town Planning have recently secured a Lawful Development Certifica[...]

Key points about developing in Bournemouth

Development Plan: Bournemouth has an adopted Core Strategy replacing much (but not all) of its 2002 Local Plan – check out our Briefing Note. There is also an adopted Affordable Housing DPD from 2010 which still applies and a Town Centre Area Action Plan.

Pre-application advice: Bournemouth charge for this service with fees dependent upon the scale of the proposal. Householder proposals are £60 with other proposals considerably higher – as an example a scheme of between 10 and 24 residential units is £600+VAT for a meeting and feedback by letter or £300+VAT for just feedback by letter. Call us for advice on whether this service is worthwhile in your case.

Affordable Housing: The national threshold of 10 units (or 1000 sqm) is applied above which there is a blanket requirement for 40% of dwellings to be affordable. Viability arguments can be made however applicants are expected to stump up the cost of independent “verification” up front (anything from £900 inc VAT up to £2100 and beyond).

Community Infrastructure Levy and Section 106 contributions:

Bournemouth have adopted CIL and are charging at the following rates:

  • Residential development outside the Town Centre Area Action Plan (AAP) Area (including sheltered and extra-care housing): £70 per sqm
  • Student accommodation: £40 per sqm
  • Comparison Retail outside the Town Centre AAP area: £250 per sqm
  • Convenience retail (supermarkets) over 280 sqm net retail floorspace: £250 per sqm
  • Convenience retail under 280 sqm net retail floorspace: £134 per sqm

All other development including residential development within the Town Centre Area Action Plan area (pictured below) will have no charge.

Bournemouth TCAAP

In addition to CIL there is a Dorset Heathlands (the whole Borough is within 5km of a heathland site) SAMM tariff – £242 for a flat and £355 for a house plus £50 admin

Special policy restrictions:

A few areas of the Borough are within 400m of heathlands sites and there no additional residential units are allowed.

The Council now seeks to prevent the loss of tourist accommodation of any kind throughout the Borough.

The sliver of countryside north of the town is all Greenbelt and mostly also within various Conservation Areas.

Useful Links

Bournemouth Planning Homepage

Planning Applications Search

Planning Policy