Sequential assessment - Planning validation requirements

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Planning document information


A  sequential assessment shows the process that you have followed to identify your proposed development site. 


The statement you submit should include an executive summary and be clear, easy to read and jargon free. 

You need to submit a sequential assessment if your application is for a retail or leisure development, not in an existing centre. Different size criteria apply for different areas:  

  • more than 1000 square metres gross affecting the Great Notley district centre  
  • 1500 square metres gross affecting Halstead and Witham town centre  
  • 2500 square metres gross affecting Braintree town centre  
  • 500 square metres gross affecting local centres 

You can get help and advice from our Duty Planner on sequential assessments and other types of planning applications. 

You can get detailed feedback on your proposal by using our pre-application advice service

Personal and confidential statement 

We may publish any information you submit as part of your application. You must tell us if there is any information you do not want us to publish when you submit your application.  

If however, we believe that this information is in the public interest, we reserve the right to publish it.  

We may also decide parts of your submission are not in the public interest and may redact this information. This information may include telephone numbers, email addresses and signatures. 

When you need to submit this information

Depending on the details of your application, you may have to submit a sequential assessment when you are making an application for: 

If your application is for one of these types of planning permission, you need to submit a sequential assessment if your proposed development is for: 

  • a retail and leisure development over 2,500 square metres gross floor space 
  • a retail and leisure development less than 2,500 square metres floor space that is likely to have a significant impact on shopping centres 
  • other town centre uses when they are in an edge of centre or out of centre location and not in accordance with the local development plan. 
Validation requirements

Required by 

  • National requirement. You can find details of this requirement in section 7 of the National Planning Policy Framework 
  • Local requirement. You can find details of this requirement in: 
    • Local plan policy - LPP1
    • Local plan policy - LPP52
    • Local plan policy - LPP11
    • Local plan policy - LPP12
    • Local plan policy - LPP15
    • Local plan policy - LPP9
    • Local plan policy - LPP10
    • Local plan policy - SP7

These policies can be found in the Local Plan 2013 - 2033 document