How to get planning permission for your stone portico or portch

How to get Planning Permission for Your Stone Porch or Portico

In this blog we will guide you on how to get planning permission for your stone porch or portico project. We will discuss why you would want a portico in the first place, the differences between a porch and a portico, and then explain whether you actually need any permission. Finally, we will take you through the planning process to ensure that you comply with the building regulations.

Please note, these are general rules, and we recommend you check with your local planning authority before starting any work on your property.

What is the Difference Between a Portico and a Porch?

While the terms ‘porch’ and ‘portico’ are often used interchangeably, they do have distinct differences that can significantly alter the appearance, practicality, and style of the front of your property.

A porch is typically an extension of your house with a roof and walls on either side, often featuring a front door. Porches are common and can be found on many houses across the country, usually constructed from brick or wood.

On the other hand, cast stone porticos are visually appealing structures supported by columns and a roof which enhance the overall aesthetic of a luxury home. The use of cast stone material can seamlessly blend with the rest of your property and create a striking entrance that adds curb appeal for visitors and passersby.

For more information on this, read our previous blog on what is a portico.

Why do I Want a Cast Stone Porch or Portico?

Cast stone porches and porticos offer a timeless blend of visual appeal, practicality, and value. Here are the key benefits of choosing a cast stone porch or portico:

  • Enhances Property Value: A cast stone porch or portico can boost your home’s overall value and attractiveness, making it a smart investment. Some sources claim that an addition of a portico can increase the value of your property by up to 6%
  • Adds Curb Appeal: Porches and porticos add curb appeal to the front of your home, creating a classy and enduring appearance that would help sell your home if you ever wanted to move.
  • Practical Weather Protection: Cast stone porticos offer shelter from the elements, providing a handy escape from rain and a welcoming entrance for guests, or even when you are simply looking for your keys.
  • Customisation Options: Personalise the design of your cast stone porch or portico to match your style preferences and enhance your home’s overall look.

Will I Need Planning Permission for my Cast Stone Porch or Portico?

When determining whether planning permission is necessary, several factors and regulations must be considered. These include the size, design, colour, and materials intended for your porch or portico construction:

Size Regulations

As a general rule if any part of your porch or portico is higher than 3 meters from ground level (measured externally), a planning application will be required. Similarly, for porticos larger than 3 meters wide, a planning application is also necessary.2

However, it is advisable to verify this with your architect and your local planning authorities (LPAs) to ensure compliance with regulations. This is important because LPAs may have different requirements. You can find your local council here –

Design, Colour and Material Regulations

Addressing local regulations and ensuring that your design aligns with specific requirements is crucial for a successful building project. This includes considerations related to listed buildings and the use of appropriate materials and colours that maybe required by the authorities.

In some locations, there may be variations in the materials and colours that you are obliged to use, making it essential to bring one of our free samples to your planning meetings for reference. Request your free cast stone samples here. This can also help you decide which colour you would prefer. Due to the diverse regulations and guidelines set by LPAs, it is crucial to conduct thorough checks and obtain necessary approvals before starting any building activities.

Acanthus Cast Stone new stone colours

At Acanthus, our experience in creating bespoke products has often involved ensuring that the look and colour aligns with LPA regulations. One notable instance of this was a project for a client with apartments in London. We incorporated Portland cast stone, a colour and texture commonly associated with the area, which also met local regulations.

By tailoring our designs to match the architectural nuances of London, including the colour, material, and style, we were able to not only meet local planning requirements but also provide a product that was in keeping with the local area.

For more information, visit our bespoke design services and products page.

We also offer a variety of porticos designed to align with the regulations of numerous LPAs. Our offerings range from the straightforward PT1 model, as shown below, to more intricate designs featuring an upper-level balustrade for added functionality and architectural detail.

Acanthus portico styles

In conclusion, aligning your design choices with local regulations and heritage considerations enhances the authenticity and appeal of your project.

How to Apply for Planning Permission for your Cast Stone Porch or Portico

Once you have determined that planning permission is required for your cast stone portico project, the next step is to initiate the application process. Here’s a breakdown on how to go about it:

1) Contact your architect and local LPA for advice

Start by contacting your architect and the Local Planning Authority (LPA) for expert advice on the planning application process. You can find your local council here – .

By consulting with these professionals, you can ensure that your planning application is submitted correctly and in line with all necessary requirements, increasing the chances of a successful approval for your cast stone portico project.

2) Filling in the application

After obtaining guidance from your architect and the Local Planning Authority, the next step involves filling in the planning application. Here’s what you will need for the application process:

Required Documents:

  • Location and Site Plan: Provide detailed location and site plans that clearly outline the proposed construction of your stone porch or portico within the property.
  • Ownership Certificate: Include an ownership certificate as evidence of your ownership rights to the property where the stone portico will be built.
  • Agricultural Holdings Certificate: If applicable, include an agricultural holdings certificate to confirm any relevant agricultural rights or constraints on the land.

By ensuring that you have all the necessary documents and information ready for the application, you can streamline the process and increase the likelihood of obtaining planning permission.

It maybe that if you have an architect helping with the project that they will complete the application for you.

3) How long will it take?

When it comes to the review process for your planning permission application, understanding the timeline can help you manage expectations effectively. Again, if you are working with a local architect, they are often aware of likely timelines and will have contacts within the planning department. Here’s typically what you can expect:

Timeline Guidelines:

  • As per the UK Government website guidelines, a decision on your application is typically reached within 8 weeks for standard cases. 3
  • For more complex applications, the review process may extend to 13 weeks to allow for a comprehensive assessment. 3

While these timelines provide a general overview, it’s important to note that the duration for a decision may vary based on the specifics of your application and the local planning considerations. Keep in touch with your Local Planning Authority or architect for updates on the progress of your application.

4) Cost for the application

While the standard cost for a planning permission application is generally around £200, it’s essential to note that this figure can vary, and of course the architect will charge for their service too. Therefore, it is crucial to verify the exact cost applicable to your specific application.

5) Can I appeal?

In the event that your planning permission application is rejected, you do have the option to appeal the decision. Here’s what you need to know about the appeal process:

Appealing a Rejection:

  • If your initial application is denied, you have the right to appeal the decision.
  • There is typically an opportunity to revise and adjust your plans to align with building regulations and address the concerns that led to the rejection.

By engaging in the appeal process and potentially adapting your plans as necessary, you can work towards achieving approval for your cast stone portico project in accordance with the building regulations and guidelines set forth by the authorities.

Again, a local and experienced architect will often be able to advise on designs that are more likely to pass planning permission first time, and therefore will help prevent potential delays and the need for an appeal.

choosing an exterior colour stone for your new build or renovation project


Embracing the significance of aligning portico design choices with local regulations, heritage considerations, and practical needs helps to create an integrated and harmonious architectural landscape. The planning, consideration of regulations, financial implications, and potential appeals, all contributing to the ultimate goal of enhancing your property’s curb appeal and value.

As previously mentioned, we can work with you, and potentially your architect or builder, to ensure that the portico design meets the requirements set by your LPA, encompassing aspects ranging from the style of the portico to the colour scheme. Our designs can be tailored to meet your bespoke needs and preferences.

Why Choose Acanthus?

We have a wide range of both standard and bespoke cast stone porticos tailored to meet your individual needs and preferences. Whether you are looking for a design that complements a specific architectural style or one that provides a contrast, our expertise and versatility allow us to create porticos that harmonise seamlessly with your vision.

‘‘Our portfolio includes cast stone porticos designed to suit various budgets and styles, ensuring that you can find a solution that aligns with your financial considerations without compromising on quality. We prioritise delivering excellence in craftsmanship, design, and service.’’ Gavin, Project Manager at Acanthus.

If you require any further information or wish to discuss our bespoke cast stone products, contact one of our friendly Acanthus team or call us on 01773 447042.

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