Planning Enforcement

Read our Planning Enforcement Charter (PDF)

Planning enforcement tackles a wide range of issues where development has occurred outwith Scottish Planning Legislation. The Scottish Government gives Councils a general discretion to take enforcement action only when it is considered expedient to do so. Any action taken has to be proportionate to the scale of the breach and to the effect that the breach has on local amenity.

Investigation will commence on receipt of any complaint but we would not normally pursue any anonymous complaints. Any enquiries should be sent to using the Planning Enforcement Enquiry Form (PDF) (Word)

Priority will always be given to breaches which involve:

  • unauthorised development causing immediate harm eg road safety;           
  • unauthorised works to listed buildings;
  • unauthorised felling of protected trees;
  • breaches of planning conditions adversely affecting amenity and/or resulting in continuing harm.

Other possible breaches which would merit investigation include:

  • work being carried out without the necessary planning permission;
  • a site or building which is in such a poor condition that it affects residential amenity.
  • an unauthorised change of use of land or buildings;
  • failure to comply with conditions attached to a permission.
  • unauthorised display of advertisements

The fact that unauthorised development has taken place does not automatically mean that enforcement action will be taken and in many cases, matters can be resolved by negotiation or by submission of a retrospective application to regularise the breach.

Any decision taken over what action to take to resolve a breach of planning may be made following consultation with relevant Moray Council departments, eg Transportation, Environmental Health or external organisations such as SEPA or Historic Environment Scotland.

Should it be determined that formal enforcement is necessary, there are various types of Enforcement Notice which can be issued dependent on the type of the breach. Some of these can be appealed and/or may culminate in indirect or direct action with recovery of costs and possibly referral to the courts. Consequently resolution can be prolonged.

For any breaches of planning control within the Cairngorms National Park Authority please read their charter:

Enforcement Register

The Planning Enforcement Register provides details of all Amenity Notices, Enforcement Notices, Breach of Condition Notices, Notices under section 33A (Notice requiring an application for planning permission for development already carried out), Temporary Stop Notices and Stop Notices served by the Council as Planning Authority in relation to land in its district and in accordance with the terms of the Town and Country Planning (Scotland) Act 1997 and other associated legislation.

By going to Planning Online details of all Notices issued can be viewed.

New Notices are uploaded within a period of 5 working days of having been served. However, the full hard copy register is available for public inspection at the Planning Section Moray Council Headquarters, High Street, Elgin IV30 1BX during the hours of 09:00 to 17:00 Monday to Friday by appointment only.

You can search our register by reference number, single line of address or postcode or by doing an Advanced Search between dates.

Contact Us

Development Management
Economic Growth & Development
The Moray Council
PO Box 6760, Elgin
IV30 9BX

0300 1234561

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