Front garden (open front) parking

Open front parking forms part of the restrictive covenants that apply to most of the properties in Harlow.

If you want to change your garden to a paved area, so that you can park your car, you need to get permission from us first.

If there are no covenants, you will be able to carry out work to your garden without our permission.

If you are unsure whether there are any covenants on your property, inspect the deeds or seek legal advice.

To be able to park on your front garden, you need:

  • direct access to the front garden from the road or public highway

Your parking space needs to:

  • be built to a standard size of 5.5m x 2.9m
  • not take up more than 75% of the total area of your garden
  • allow for appropriate drainage of surface water
  • not affect any sight lines

We will not allow any vehicle crossing where the depth of the parking space is less than 5 metres, so please do not apply as we will not refund your application fee.

For more information on the criteria your front garden needs to meet, read our open front parking policy guide (pdf)


To apply for open front parking, you need to:

  • complete the open front parking application form (pdf)
  • send the application form to Structural Engineering Services
  • include a drawing of your front garden, with the measurements of the garden and area you plan to pave
  • pay the £100 fee (non-refundable)
  • get signatures of consent from two neighbours

Once we receive your application, we will process it within 3 to 4 weeks.

Once we have given permission, we will pass the details on to Essex County Council Highways for any dropped kerb work.

You must pay the cost of dropping the kerb and making alterations to the pavement.

If your application is unsuccessful, we will not refund your fee, but you can appeal against the decision in writing to Structural Engineering Services.

Contact information

Structural Engineering Services
Harlow Council
Civic Centre
The Water Gardens
College Square
CM20 1WG