Dishes and the law

Know your rights and responsibilities

Although every addition or alteration to your home is governed by planning regulations, you can make many changes without applying for planning permission – and this includes installing most satellite dishes.

Provided that it is a minidish of the normal size to receive freesat or Sky, and there aren’t already two or more dishes on the building, then you can usually put up the dish without the bother of obtaining approval from your local authority.

However, the law still requires all satellite dishes to be sited to cause the least visual impact on the building and its surroundings. If your local authority planning department thinks that your dish could be better sited, to be less intrusive, then you could be forced to re-site the dish at your own expense, so it makes sense to go for a discreet installation from the start. If you are in any doubt, speak to your local authority’s planning officer first.

Different rules apply to residents of blocks of flats and listed buildings, and those in a conservation area, a National Park, an area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, or in the Norfolk or Suffolk Broads. Permission may be required for a minidish dish in these circumstances.

You can get full details of the planning regulations for satellite dishes from your local authority or from: