Apparatus and excavation licence
You will need a licence if you:
- need to repair existing apparatus such as pipe work or cables, or place new apparatus that will be in your ownership in the public highway
- are having utility-owned apparatus placed in a trench that is to be excavated by a third party – a contractor you have hired that has no connection to any of the utility companies
- need to carry out excavation to repair a retaining wall, or if you want to excavate investigatory trial holes in the public highway.
How much will a licence cost?
- Placing a new apparatus in the highway £390.
- Repairing an existing apparatus £270.
- There is an extra charge of £75 for each additional 200 metres length of excavation.
- The cancellation fee is up to £120 – the final cost depends on how far the application has been processed.
- There is no extra fee for using temporary traffic signals.
- If Devon County Council has served you a Section 81 notice letter there is no fee to pay.
- Construction of a solar or wind farm £470.
- Making a temporary excavation in the highway £270.
There is no VAT to add to these prices.
How do I apply?
- Read the guidance notes thoroughly.
- Complete the application form.
- Tell us if any details change such as the start date of the works, or if remedial work is needed.
- You must contact utility companies to see if they have apparatus in the area which will be affected by your works. We do not need to see the results of your plant enquiries.
- You must register the work when it is completed.
What if I need to close a road or change a traffic regulation order?
To close a road or change a traffic regulation you will need to apply for a temporary traffic regulation order (TTRO). A temporary traffic regulation order is the legal process that is used to introduce temporary restrictions, for example a road closure, suspension of a one-way street or a suspension of parking.
Road closures are a last resort and will only be granted following a completed application and risk assessment. Check the costs for temporary road closure.
Where do I send my completed applications?
You can download the forms, fill them in and email them to us at email@example.com or print them off, fill them in and post them to:
Please send your TTRO along with your Section 50 application to the same email or postal address above to ensure they are processed in conjunction with each other. If you are making payment by cheque you can supply one cheque for the full amount of both applications. Any further documents, such as the SWL5 form, can also be sent to the same address or emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org
We can take payment by card over the phone for applications sent by email.
Help us improve
If you have recently applied for a section 50 licence and would like to provide some feedback on the process please use our Highways feedback form to do so. If you are a contractor please use Feedback form – for contractors.
We will look at all feedback submitted and, where possible, use it to improve our service.