Planning Permission for High-Rise Buildings

FOI Number: 22036

Where applicable, we publish responses to requests under the Freedom of Information Act 2000. This one, Planning Permission for High-Rise Buildings, is detailed below.


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Freedom of Information

Published on 24 May 2022

Ref: FOI/22036 


I am writing to confirm that the West Midlands Fire Service has now completed its search for the information you requested further to your freedom of information request. 

Please find below a summary of our findings. 


I would like to know how many planning applications for high-rise buildings with single escape stairs the WMFRS has submitted comments to since January 2021. If possible, I would like the information in a table form with LPA planning reference numbers for each planning application. 


Since January 2021 West Midlands Fire Service has received 1004 planning applications and each application would need to be manually checked to ascertain whether the requested information is held, and we anticipate this would exceed the appropriate limit as defined in the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA). Therefore your request is refused under Section 12 of the FOIA .  

The permitted time is approximately 100 hours to locate, retrieve and extract the information and therefore, if you wish we can issue you a fee notice which must be paid in full before we release the information.  Please inform me at your earliest convenience if you wish procced.   

However, planning information is readily available to the public, on local authority planning portals and can be searched easily.  

At planning stage, we only consider access for firefighting purposes and facilities for firefighting so would not evaluate the number and distribution of stairs. We would make no comments on any application in regard to stairs within the building as we only comment on firefighting access and facilities. 

If you have any queries about this Freedom of Information request, please contact us. Please remember to quote the reference number above in any future communications.  

For service complaints, issues or comments regarding this request please contact The Public Relations Department, West Midlands Fire Service, 99 Vauxhall Road, Birmingham, B7 4HW 

Further information concerning Freedom of Information requests can be found on the Information Commissioner website at either the following link: or at Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, SK9 5AF. 

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