Design guides

Good design is vital for protecting and enhancing the character of the Broads and is also essential for achieving truly sustainable development.

We give design a lot of weight in determining planning applications because of the special qualities of the Broads.

We have produced some guides to help ensure that development in the executive area is appropriate and acknowledges these special qualities. The guides have been subject to consultation with the public prior to being adopted by the Authority.

Towards a Dark Sky Standard

As a precursor to the planning process and as an extra resource for applicants, “Towards A Dark Sky Standard” is a general guide and overview of the key considerations needed for good lighting design and the protection of dark skies.

While it is not a formal planning document, the information within it will help applicants, developers, lighting professional and the general public to install lighting that does not unnecessarily impact on dark skies.

The standard provides an overview of basic lighting principles and provides links and information towards other essential documents, e.g. British Standards, Planning Policy and professional guidance, that may need to be considered when designing and installing any lighting.

There is also some advice  on the impact of internal light spill and some good tips when purchasing lights for any need.

The guide has been produced by lighting and dark sky professionals.

There is also an accessibility version (PDF) of the Towards A Dark Sky Standard guide.

Guide on residential moorings

The Residential moorings guide (PDF) is designed to help implement the policies of the adopted Local Plan for the Broads relating to residential moorings. It is designed for decision makers as well as applicants and site owners, with information which is considered to be useful to help make schemes as successful as possible

The first draft guide was subject to public consultation in early 2020, with an amended guide subject to a second round of consultation between September and November 2020.

You can see the comments received here:

Guide to understanding and addressing the impact of new developments on peat soil

This Peat development guide (PDF) provides additional information to help applicants meet the requirements of the related peat policy. It seeks to reduce the amount of peat excavated, ensure the special qualities are addressed and ensure that any peat excavated it disposed of in a way to ensure stored carbon is not emitted into the atmosphere.

This guide was consulted on from 25 September to 20 November 2020. You can read comments received on the Peat Development Guide (PDF).

Guidance on Solar PV and Building Regulations in Conservation areas

The following guide provides information on homeowners in conservation areas wishing to install a roof-mounted solar PV system for electricity generation.

Visit the East Suffolk website to access the Solar PV guide.

Mooring design guide

Moorings are part of the everyday landscape in the Broads for residents, visitors and those who work on the river. As the interface between water and land, it is important that moorings are properly considered and well designed. We welcome the right type of safe mooring design in the right place. The mooring design guide (PDF) provides important information on how to achieve the same high standard that the we set for our own work and was adopted by the Authority on 20 November 2015.

Riverbank stabilisation guide

The careful design of bank stabilisation and protection is crucial to maintain the special landscape character of the Broads. We are keen to see the use of more subtle forms of bank protection in appropriate areas. The river bank stabilisation guide (PDF) is intended to give landowners advice on the best method to use and provides important information on how to achieve the same high standard that we set for our own work and was adopted by the Authority on 20 November 2015.

Biodiversity Enhancements guide

The Biodiversity Enhancements guide (PDF) provides information, images and further links on different types of wildlife enhancements that could be provided as part of schemes. The enhancements range from bird and bat boxes, to log piles and ponds. This guide was adopted by the Authority on 18 November 2016.

Waterside Bungalows and Chalets guide

The Waterside Bungalows and Chalets guide (PDF) describes the history of the bungalows properties as well as discusses their importance. In part two, it discusses changes that are often proposed for waterside bungalows/chalets ranging from new windows and extension to total replacements. This guide was adopted by the Authority on 18 November 2016.

Landscaping strategy guide

The Broads is a nationally designated landscape and development should seek to protect and enhance the landscape of the Broads. The purpose of the Landscaping strategy guide (PDF) is to help applicants understand and address landscape impacts of their schemes and design and deliver high quality landscaping schemes. This guide was adopted by the Authority on 28 July 2017.

Sustainability guide

Sustainability Guide coverThe Sustainability Guide (PDF) was prepared by LSI Architects in conjunction with the Broads Authority following initial research funded by the Broads Authority Sustainable Development Fund. We hope that the ideas will inspire you and that there are some you can incorporate into your next building project.

The online booklet has sections on:

  • designing buildings to adapt to climate change
  • energy efficiency
  • choosing materials which have a low impact on resource depletion and energy consumption
  • making use of acoustic and thermal insulation, natural daylight and ventilation
  • understanding the importance of conserving limited natural resources and minimising consumption.

Recycling, renewable energy, redevelopment of existing buildings, limiting exposure to sun and wind and reducing pollution are also covered.

Please do not feel restricted by the suggestions made in the guide. It is not a formula for creating buildings which all look the same, but a framework of opportunities whose objective is a unique sustainable future for the Broads. Hard copies of the guide in booklet and CD format are available from the Broads Authority offices.

Other guides

There are also these other guides that might be of relevance and use for your scheme: