Adding trellis to your fencing is an elegant design option for your garden giving it a real uniqueness. Coming in different panel shapes, sizes and types, they are often used to divide gardens into sections while allowing light to pass through. As garden screens, they are particularly effective for climbing plants, while Square and Diamond trellis designs are often used as a topper for fence panels.

A common question is: do homeowners need planning permission if they intend to use trellis panels as a topper for fencing?

Lattice trellis - is planning permission needed

Neighbourly Relations (are important)

There are many differing attitudes to this question, with most people believing it’s down to the neighbours. Some argue that, as the fence belongs to them and not the neighbours, they can do whatever they like to it.

Others are more cautious insisting that, as your neighbours are the only people likely to complain, you should discuss any planned works with them first. A common rationale is that a fence topper would benefit the neighbours too and give them extra privacy, so no planning permission should be needed.

But is it a mistake to believe that permission is simply down to the neighbours?
trellis toppers
Height Restrictions

The short answer is yes: don’t make the error of relying solely on your neighbours goodwill. It is definitely good etiquette to discuss any work you intend on carrying out with them first. Also, to avoid any disputes, you’ll need to check whether the fence you plan on altering legally belongs to you. If you are planning on installing a new fence, then the exact boundary line between your garden and your neighbour’s should be checked against the property’s deeds.

However, even if you get the go-ahead from your neighbours, you may still need planning permission. Generally, you need planning permission if, by adding trellis topper panels, you would be increasing the height of your fence to over two metres high. Even if it won’t reach that height, it’s best practice to check with your Local Authority anyway. The simple advice here is to go by the letter of the law, not your neighbour.

Trellis with steel screws

What Does the Law Say?

You will require planning permission for any new fence, gate or wall over two metres in height. This includes the addition of trellis panels on top of an existing fence if this takes the overall height to above 2-metres.

Should you reside next to a highway used by vehicles, then you would need planning permission if the fence will reach only 1-metre high with your trellis topper installed. You will not need to apply for planning permission to improve an existing fence if you don't increase its height.

If you're looking for more information as to whether you need planning permission for fencing read more here.

Applying for planning permission is a straightforward and easy process now, which can be done online.

Jacksons Fencing offers a range of stunning trellis panels with matching gates, which are perfect for creating enclosed areas in your garden or adding a touch of luxury to the top of your existing fencing.