A planning condition may require a school to submit a school travel plan if the planning application is expected to, or has potential to, cause a material increase in travel demand to and from the school.

You will be required to submit a travel plan if there is a significant increase in the size and consequent trips to and from the school. Or if there is a history of school related congestion issues in the local area.

We will be notified when planning applications require a travel plan.

The planning authority will determine the timescale within which the school will be required to achieve an approved travel plan which may be required to be in place before the application is registered as a valid submission and/or determined. If the school does not produce an approved travel plan in the timescale required, it may affect the outcome of any current or future planning applications.

Where the development of a school travel plan is required it could lead to:

  • Highway improvements funded by developer, agreed by traffic management, travel planning and Buckinghamshire County Council as the Highways Authority
  • Additional provision and promotion of public / home-to-school transport
  • Restriction of on-site parking facilities
  • Promotion of and encouragement for walking, cycling, car-sharing
  • Improved facilities for walking and cycling

The following must be considered in all developments / improvements:

  • Improved pedestrian and cyclist routes to school to enhance safety and reduce traffic speeds
  • Improvements to highway network to discourage car use and reduce traffic speeds
  • Segregated accesses and routes on-site (pedestrian, cyclist and vehicles) to enhance safety
  • Traffic calming on site to reduce vehicle speeds
  • Restrictions on visitor / parent parking on site
  • Secure, covered, overlooked cycle storage facilities
  • Lockers / storage facilities for wet clothing, helmets and equipment
  • Wet weather shelters / waiting areas
  • Bus / minibus / car-sharing priorities or facilities

National Planning Policy Framework
The National Planning Policy Framework was published on 27 March 2012. This is a key part of Government reforms to make the planning system less complex and more accessible, to protect the environment and to promote sustainable growth.

Transport policies have an important role to play in facilitating sustainable development but also in contributing to wider sustainability and health objectives.

The school travel plan will be made binding through planning conditions attached to the planning permission. Conditions attached to a planning permission will be enforceable against the applicant.

A planning condition may be used to require that specific aspects of the plan (for example, specific initiatives or measures) be implemented, or may be used to prevent development on the application site until a particular event occurs. The measures that form part of the plan may include:

  • Provision of secure cycle parking and safe pedestrian and cycle routes
  • Provision of facilities for public transport
  • The provision of information to staff and students about public transport, walking and cycling access to the site

This list is not exhaustive.

Permitted Development
You may want to ask them about “Permitted Development”. Some work on non-domestic buildings does not require permission as it comes under this regime.

The national planning portal website will help provide advice about the planning process and information on what Permitted Development means and explains all the jargon.

District Council Advice
If you are not sure if you need planning permission to carry out work on your school site you should contact your District Council’s planning department.

General planning advice is available from the relevant District Council. This includes help with the pre-application and post decision process, the planning application process, help with the appropriate forms, and general information about planning policies. It should be noted that they cannot give advice on site specific matters, only general advice.

Chiltern District – 01494 732050 or in person at the Council Offices between 9:00am to 12.30pm.

South Bucks– Tel: 01895 837210 and 01895 837342 / Email:

Wycombe District – information for planning advice Tel: 01494 421 581 / Email:

Aylesbury Vale District – Tel: 01296 585858 or Plans Team on 01296 585439