Do I need planning permission?

Solar panels mounted on or within the grounds of a house or a flat:

You will need to apply for full planning permission (flats) or householder planning permission (houses) to install a solar panel if:

  • it would protrude more than 20cm from the wall or above the roof slope (when measured perpendicularly from the external surface of the wall or roof);
  • the highest part of the solar panel or equipment will be higher than the highest part of the roof (excluding any chimney);
  • the property is in a conservation area and/or covered by an Article 4 Direction and it would be located on a wall or roof slope visible from the road; or
  • it would be installed on an outbuilding within the grounds of a listed building

If your house or flat is a listed building (or part of a listed building), you will need to apply for listed building consent to install a solar panel.

Stand alone solar panels (panels not on a building)

You will need to apply for or full planning permission (flats) or householder planning permission (houses) to install a stand alone solar panel if:

  • more than one stand alone solar panel would be installed;
  • it would exceed 4m in height;
  • it would located 5m within the boundary of the property;
  • it would be installed within the grounds of a listed building;
  • in a conservation area, any part of the solar installation would be nearer to
  • any highway bounding the house than the part of the house that is nearest the highway; or
  • the surface area of any stand alone solar panel will exceed 9m² or exceed 3m in any dimension.

Siting and design

Solar panels should be sited as unobtrusively as possible, so as to minimise their effect on the external appearance of your house and on the amenity of the area. They should be removed as soon as they are no longer needed.

Where can I find more information?

The solar panels section of the national planning portal has lots of guidance and useful information.

Can I get confirmation that I do not require planning permission?

In situations where you may need to prove, or obtain peace of mind that an existing or a proposed solar panel is lawful, you can apply for a Lawful Development Certificate (LDC)

Am I likely to get planning permission?

If you want to find out whether your proposal is likely to be acceptable, you can apply for pre-planning application advice

How do I apply?

You can apply via the national planning portal  To find out what information is required with your application, please see making a planning application

Still not sure whether you need planning permission?

If you need further advice about whether you need planning permission you can contact contact planning advice and information