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Licensing & Permits

New works or variation to existing works

Barge in Middle District of River Thames with cargo on and a GPS Marine crane

This licence is required when new works are proposed (for example a new pier) or where it is proposed to vary existing works (for example to increase the number of piles or to vary the use of the works). You will need to make an application at the following link:


If you are proposing to undertake works and as a result of undertaking those works less than 50m3 of dredging would be required then it will be possible to licence this de-minimis dredging when the river works licence is issued.

The PLA aims to process applications within three months of receiving a valid application. An application will only be valid upon receipt of all of the required documentation and payment of the application fee (inclusive of VAT).

The following should be provided with any application for new works or to vary existing works

  • Application form (MAKE AN APPLICATION)
  • Dredging application form (Word, PDF) if de-minimis dredging is proposed
  • Location of works marked on a PLA chart extract
  • Method statement and risk assessment
  • Scaled drawings - Further information can be found at this link.
  • Riparian life saving equipment – The PLA strongly recommends that permanent riparian life saving equipment such as grab chains is provided at all sites.
  • Red-line mooring box shown on a PLA chart for any applications involving the mooring of vessels. The red line box should show the extent of the area required for mooring the intended vessels at the Works.
  • Water Framework Directive Assessment
  • Green Technologies Assessment
  • Licensee information (including registered address and company number where relevant)
  • Relevant contextual / background information including the proposed timescale of the works
  • Application fee
  • Supporting studies where relevant (for example: hydrodynamic assessment, risk assessment, environmental assessment or statement)
  • Land ownership details must be provided If the applicant is not the owner of the works or the riverside land. In such cases, the PLA may need to see written confirmation that the owner consents to the applicant being granted a licence and has the landowner's permission to gain access to the river works over his/her land. These requirements will not always apply to moorings placed in the river away from the river bank
  • For outfalls the following information will also be required
    • Number and locations of outfalls (locations to be marked on a PLA chart)
    • Dimension of outfall(s) including flap valve
    • Number of residential units and total area to be drained (in sq.m)
    • Number of commercial units and total area to be drained (in sq.m)
    • Total area to be drained (sq.m) – total developable area
    • Flow rates in litres /second for each outfall
    • Details of any bed protection if proposed
    • Land registry details for the land adjoining the proposed outfall(s)

Essential information

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