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Self and Custom Build Register

Page Under Review.

Self and Custom-Build Register

From 1 April 2016, councils are required to set up local registers of those looking to buy plots of land to commission or build their own home.

What is self-build and custom build?

Self-build in this context means that you are directly involved in organising the design and construction of your home. It does not mean you actually have to build it yourself.

Custom-build usually means working with a specialist developer to deliver your home.

There may be some overlap between the two, for example some custom build developers offer the option of a serviced plot where you can design and build your own home as part of a larger scheme.

What is the purpose of the register?

The register will provide an indication of the demand for self/custom build in Burnley and allow the Council to develop its housing and planning policies to support the kinds of self and custom build projects that would be most appropriate.

Why Register?

If you are registered, the Council will be able to let you know if/when it has a suitable site in its ownership that meets your requirements. By signing up you will help us find out more about the demand for self and custom build plots, where people would like their plot to be and the type of home they would like to build.

The government is proposing further legislation and policy changes affecting how councils must respond to the new register, including potentially asking them to identify suitable ‘serviced’ plots with planning permission to meet the demand set out in the register.

Please note that completing an entry on the register does not guarantee that the Council will be able to identify a suitable site for you.

Don’t want to register?

You do not need to be on the register to self or custom build. This method of developing a home has always been possible through buying a plot of land with planning permission, or buying a suitable plot of land and applying for planning permission. The new register is intended to promote this form of development.

How to Register

If you would like to register, you can complete the application form in the ‘downloads’ section on the right hand side of this page. Please send your completed application to:

Burnley Borough Council, c/o Policy and Environment, 19 Parker Lane, Burnley, BB11 2BY or email to

Alternatively you can apply online at

Some of the questions on the form are mandatory and you must answer these to be included on the register. Entry is only for those wishing to have their sole or main home in the Borough.

The optional questions are designed to give the Council a clearer picture of your wishes and the type and location of site that would meet your requirements. We also need to understand what sort of property you want and could afford to build and when. 

If you are part of a couple or other household group that wants to register for a single plot, please complete one application in one of your names.  If you are representing a self-build group and would like to make an application on behalf of the group, please complete a single application.

From the 1st July 2020, the Council is introducing a fee of £100 to join the Self and Custom Build Register in order to help cover some of the costs it is incurring in gaining planning permission for this use. The Council will also be introducing an annual fee of £100 thereafter for applicants to stay on the register for up to 3 years. The maximum fee to be paid would therefore be £300, however, applicants will be permitted to stay on the register beyond three years, after £300 has been paid.

Please contact the Council on to make arrangements for payment.

What Happens Next?

Once you have submitted your application we will notify you within 28 days as to the success of your application for entry to the register.


We will not pass personally identifiable information from the Register on to anyone outside the Council, other than those who process information on our behalf, without your written consent.

Removal from the register

You can write to us at any time to ask to amend your entry or to ask be removed. Please do let us know if you are no longer looking for a plot in Burnley. We will contact you periodically to confirm that you wish to remain on the register.


For further advice on completing the application, please contact:


Telephone: 01282 425011 ext 7204

Further Information

The Council publishes a list of housing sites with planning permission in its ‘Housing Land Availability Schedule ’

You can look up the details of planning permissions on the Council’s application search facility

You can also see which sites are allocated for housing development in Burnley's Local Plan.

Additional Information Sources


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