Do I Need Planning Permission for Signs?


Are you considering putting up signage for your business and wondering if you need planning permission? Here’s what you need to know:

Most signage does not require planning permission, but there are some exceptions. Generally, if your sign is larger than 0.3 square meters, you may need to seek planning permission through your local authority. Additionally, any illuminated signs will require planning permission to ensure they do not pose any hazards to passing traffic.

Since criteria can vary by local authority, it’s best to check with them to be certain.

When planning your business signage, keep these key considerations in mind:

  • Ensure your signage is tidy and complements your venue’s style.
  • Obtain permission from your landlord if necessary.
  • Ensure your signage is safe and does not pose hazards to people or other businesses.
  • Do not obscure any highway signs.
  • Ensure your signage is non-offensive and considerate to passersby.
  • Most of the time, even if planning permission is required, local authorities are supportive and willing to assist businesses. It’s a good idea to observe other businesses’ signage in your area for practical and stylistic inspiration.
Do I need planning permission for signs

Consequences of Non-Compliance

Erecting a sign without the required consent can result in enforcement action. This might include fines, legal action, or a directive to remove the sign. To avoid these issues, always check with your local planning authority if you’re unsure whether you need consent.


In summary, while many signs in the UK can be displayed without planning permission, it’s crucial to understand the regulations that apply to your specific situation. Factors such as the sign’s size, location, and illumination will determine whether you need to apply for advertisement consent. When in doubt, consult with your local planning authority to ensure compliance and avoid potential penalties.

If you are still unsure if you need planning permission for signs, the Harlequin team is available to offer free and friendly advice to help you get your signage professionally designed, secure, long-lasting, and perfectly suited to your business.

Feel free to contact us at signs@harlequincps.co.uk or call us at 01256 851312


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