Usually you do not need planning permission to erect a shed in your back garden. This rule of thumb applies generally to single-storey sheds with a floor space of less than 30 square metres, with an eave height (i.e. from the ground to the top of the wall beneath the roof) of less than 2.5 metres. Flat roofs have to be under 3 metres high, and the pinnacle of pitched roof under 4 metres.
Note that you will need planning permission if you intend to use the shed as a bedroom and/or you wish to install a toilet in it; or if you intend to run a business from it (as opposed to using it simply as a home office).
The shed should be sited at least 1 metre from any boundary (e.g. your garden fence) and cannot take up more than 50% of your garden space.
Further restrictions apply if you live in
a Conservation Area
an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
a National Park
where planning permission may be required for any kind of shed structure.
A shed with a floor space of less than 15 square metres would not normally have to comply with building regulations if it does not contain sleeping accommodation. Some restrictions do apply to sheds between 15 and 30 square metres. Of course normal safety standards have to be adhered to, particularly regarding any electrical connections.
Sheds In Woodlands
If you are lucky enough to own a bit of woodland, you may want a shed to store tools and equipment. For any permanent structure, you should seek planning permission. For details and advice, and further useful comments in the accompanying correspondence from woodland owners, see www.woodlands.co.uk/blog/practical-guides/woodland-sheds
Please note that the content on this page is no way binding and all planning permission decisions are dependent on local authorities. Please contact your local council for more information.