Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) Guidance

Important: It is an offence for a person to knowingly or recklessly supply information which is false or misleading in a material respect to a charging authority in response to a requirement under the CIL Regulations 2010 (as amended).

CIL Explained

The Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) is a new way local authorities can raise funds towards infrastructure from developments in their area. In the majority of cases this will replace the existing system of using planning obligations (Section 106 agreements) to secure funds. The money can be used to fund infrastructure that supports development.

The infrastructure that the levy will support in the Borough of Surrey Heath is listed on the adopted Regulation 123 List.  The Regulation 123 List was updated on the 28 March 2019, following the update to the Thames Basin Heaths Special Protection Area Avoidance Strategy SPD.

This list includes, for example, highway projects and community facilities as well as provision towards Suitable Alternative Natural Greenspace (SANG) land as mitigation to avoid harm to the Thames Basin Heath Special Protection Area (SPA). A 5% administrative charge will be taken out of all contributions.

CIL Liable Development

The levy may be payable on development which creates net additional floor space, where the gross internal area of new build exceeds 100 square metres. That limit does not apply to new houses or flats, and a charge can be levied on a single house or flat of any size.

The following are not liable to pay the levy:

  • Development of less than 100 square metres unless this is a whole house, in which case the levy is payable;
  • Fouses, flats, residential annexes and residential extensions which are built by self-builders;
  • Social housing that meets the relief criteria;
  • Charitable development that meets the relief criteria;
  • Buildings into which people do not normally go;
  • Buildings into which people go only intermittently for the purpose of inspecting or maintaining fixed plant or machinery;
  • Structures which are not buildings, such as pylons and wind turbines;
  • Specified types of development where local authorities have decided should be subject to a 'zero' rate and specified as such in their charging schedules;
  • Vacant buildings brought back into the same use;
  • Where the levy liability is calculated to be less than £50, the chargeable amount is deemed to be zero so no levy is due;
  • Mezzanine floors, inserted into an existing building, unless they form part of a wider planning permission that seeks to provide other works as well.

Surrey Heath charges CIL on residential and retail developments only. Dependent on the use class of your proposal (Class C3, A1 - A5) and where your proposal is located different rates apply. Please refer to the Council's adopted CIL Charging Schedule which includes charging zones with supporting maps to see whether your proposal is likely to be liable.

The first step is for you to complete and sign the Additional Information Requirement Form and submit this with your application. This form will be required for all residential and retail developments, including householder applications, certificates of lawfulness and applications for prior approval. In order to complete this form, please refer to the accompanying Guidance Notes.

Where you consider your proposal to be CIL Liable it is advisable you also submit Form 1: Assumption of Liability. If you are responsible for paying CIL it is in your interests to submit this form with your application as this form must be submitted before development commences.

If you think you qualify for relief or exemption then you should also complete Form 2, SB1 or SB2, as appropriate and submit with your application.

On receipt of the necessary forms the Council will contact you to confirm whether your development is CIL liable and will advise the next steps.

CIL and Permitted Development

In cases where you are exercising permitted development rights you may still be liable to pay CIL. For example: a prior approval application for the conversion of offices to flats; or, where the development is more than 100 square metres of net additional area.

To confirm whether your proposal is CIL liable it is still advisable that you complete the Additional Information Requirement Form and submit this to the Council.

If you intend to commence development then you must submit Form 5: Notice of Chargeable Development to the Council before you commence development, unless the development in question is less than 100 square metres of net additional floorspace.

CIL and Thames Basin Heath SPA Mitigation

CIL is the main mechanism for collecting SANG monies. Further guidance is provided in section 6 of the Thames Basin Heaths Special Protection Area Avoidance Strategy SPD.  Strategic Access Management and Monitoring (SAMM) monies cannot be collected through CIL but are required in addition to SANG. Even if your proposal is Class C2 (Residential Institutions) or Class C4 (House in Multiple Occupation), i.e. not liable for CIL, you will still be required to pay SAMM monies. The charges for SAMM are given below and you can either: a) pay up front at the time of the application; or, b) submit a unilateral undertaking (there will be an additional legal fee of £250) and pay on commencement.

Number of bedrooms SAMM charge Tariff
1 1.40 £465.89
2 1.85 £614.32
3 2.50 £830.16
4 2.85 £946.38
5+ 3.70 £1228.63

To enable delivery of new residential units that are not CIL liable but nonetheless include a net increase in residential units the Council will require such development to contribute toward the cost of the ongoing management and maintenance of SANG through a Unilateral Undertaking. This is to meet the requirements of the Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2017 (or as subsequently amended). The Council will levy a contribution of £112.50 per square metre for the residential floorspace created. This is the management and maintenance cost of SANG.

The types of development affected include:

  • Change of use to Residential use through the Prior Approval process under the General Permitted Development Order 2015 (or as subsequently amended);
  • Self/custom build homes;
  • Affordable Housing and Starter Homes as defined in the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF);
  • Applications where less than 100sqm residential floor space is created;
  • Conversions to residential use from other use classes (as set out in the Town and Country Planning Use Classes Order), through planning permission, where not CIL liable;
  • Conversions to a C2 use where the development may be considered to give rise to likely significant effect to the SPA.

For residential conversions within use class C3 (Residential) and C4 (Houses of Multiple Occupation), where no additional floorspace is created but the overall number of units increases, avoidance measures must also be provided through the allocation of SANG, with contributions charged as set out in paragraphs 6.7-6.10 of the Thames Basin Heaths Special Protection Area Avoidance Measures Supplementary Planning Document (2019). The development types above may not form an exhaustive list of residential developments providing net additional units that are not CIL liable. The Council will seek appropriate SANGs contributions for any other residential development types that are not CIL liable but are required to provide avoidance measures for their impact on the Thames Basin Heaths Special Protection Area.

For applications that are not CiL liable, contributions will be through a Unilateral Undertaking. Applicants should contact the relevant planning office who will instruct legal to draw up the Unilateral Undertaking.

Important: You are strongly advised to check with the Council before submitting a planning application for any residential development as to whether there is SANG capacity available. If capacity is available on validation of a submitted planning application for dwellings, then the Council will seek to assign capacity to the application. In the event that the application is refused planning permission the SANG capacity assigned will be withdrawn. If an application is appealed and capacity is available at the time the appeal is submitted then capacity will be re-assigned. If no capacity is available then an Inspector will need to have regard to the SANG situation at the time the appeal is heard. 

Local Community Improvement Fund

Payments made via the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) enable the Council to raise funds for some forms of new development in the community, to help fund the infrastructure needed to mitigate the impacts of that development.  A proportion of the money collected through the Levy, known as the Local Community Improvement Fund, can be spent on local projects in the Borough.
The types of infrastructure included (as outlined in our Regulation 123 list) are as follows:   
  • Shared Suitable Accessible Natural Greenspace (SANG)
  • Open Space
  • Local Sustainable Transport Projects Play Areas & Equipped Playing Space
  • Indoor Sports & Leisure Facilities
  • Community Facilities
  • Climate Change
  • Digital Infrastructure
There will be two opportunities in each financial year (from the beginning of April) to submit projects for consideration - closing dates to be announced.  Once forms have been reviewed the decision(s) will be made by the Executive Board Members of the Council, via consultation with local communities and Ward Councillors.
The current bidding period is open from 1st July 2022, with a closing deadline of midnight on 29th July 2022.
The bidding for funds for projects is designed for non-Parished areas in the Borough only: Parish Councils can be approached directly for support in relation to project funds, since they receive a proportion of Community Infrastructure Levy monies from building developments in their Parishes.
Local groups (such as residents' associations, sports clubs and community groups) and infrastructure providers (including the Environment Agency, NHS/GP surgeries and Surrey County Council) can suggest projects or improvements by completing and submitting the online Community Improvement Fund Project Application Form. Prior to submitting the form, please read the Local Community Improvement Fund 2022-2023 - Guidance Notes carefully.  Any additional documents to support your submitted application should be emailed separately to
The projects selected for CIL funding will be outlined in an Annual Infrastructure Funding Statement, and updated during each financial year.

Advice on Calculating the Levy

In calculating Gross Internal Area (GIA) chargeable area the definitions in the RICS Code of Measuring Practice, 6th Edition, 2007 are relied upon.

In general terms any internal area all floors including rooms, circulation space such as lifts and floorspace devoted to corridors, toilets, storage, conservatories, garages and other ancillary buildings are included. For a full list of inclusions and exclusions please click on the following link.

To ensure that the chargeable area is calculated correctly and in accordance with the Council's Local Validation List existing and proposed floor plans should be drawn at a metric scale (typically 1:50 or 1:100) and must include a scale bar. Each floor should be clearly titled (typically as ground floor, first floor etc.) and the internal space should be annotated to indicate the existing/proposed use (s). Demolition of existing buildings or walls should be clearly shown. Your floor plans should also indicate the thickness of external wall and any other evidence you consider relevant to your submission.

When verifying your GIA calculations the Council will accept a 1-5% margin of error.

In accordance with Regulation 40 of the CIL Regulations (as amended) where part of an existing building has been in lawful use for a continuous period of 6 months within the past three years, parts of that building that are to be demolished or retained can be taken into account. Where an existing building does not meet the six-month lawful use requirement, its demolition (or partial demolition) is not taken into account. However, parts of that building that are to be retained as part of the chargeable development can still be taken into account if the intended use matches a use that could have lawfully been carried out without requiring a new planning permission. Because there must be a lawful use, parts of the building where the use has been abandoned cannot be taken into account here. The Council will require evidence of lawful use for the time period required. Evidence may include records from business rates, environmental health, licensing, bank statements, council tax records and utility bills.

CIL Calculator

This calculator should be used for guidance only and is not a formal determination of CIL liability.


In calculating individual charges for the Levy, Regulation 40 (as amended by the 2014 Regulations) requires collecting authorities to apply index of inflation to keep the levy responsive to market conditions. This index presents forecast figures, which are updated and finalised annually. Regulation 40 (6) states the index figure for a given year is the figure for the 1st November for the preceding year in the National All-In Tender Price Index of construction costs published by the Building Cost Information Service (BCIS) of the Royal  Institution of Chartered Surveyors.

From 1 January 2020 local authorities in areas which charge the levy should use the figure for 1 November for the preceding calendar year. See the ‘Community Infrastructure Levy (Amendment) (England) Regulations 2019’. 
The Index is an annual index and the figure to be used from 1 November each year will be published in October.
RICS CIL Index (base 1985 mean = 100)
Year Index Published
2022 332 26 October 2021
The index is based on the BCIS All-in Tender Price Index (BCIS TPI).  The index is published on the same base as the BCIS All-in Tender Price Index used in the previous regulations. The 2022 figure is based on building prices in 2021 and will apply from 1 January 2022.
The index will be published on the fourth Monday in October each year. The Index, once published, will not normally be subject to revision. Should RICS feel it necessary to amend a published Index this will only be done with the agreement of MHCLG and details will be provided on the Webpage.

Requirements Prior to Commencement of Development and the Collection Process

The following forms must be submitted to the Council prior to commencement of development:

On receipt of the Assumption of Liability Notice the Council will issue a Liability Notice. This says how much CIL is payable and when. In the majority of cases you will be required to pay on commencement of development. Where no one has assumed liability to pay and the Council is aware that the development has started, the liability will default to the owner (s) of any material interest in the land. Where it is one person, they are responsible for payments. Where it is more than one person, the Council will apportion liability.

On receipt of the Commencement Notice a Demand Notice will be issued for the CIL payment, setting out the payment due dates in line with the payment procedure.
On commencement of development you should follow the correct payment procedure. The Council will issue a receipt for each payment received.

Surcharges and Enforcement

Failure to submit the necessary forms to the Council, failure to notify the Council of changes, failure to comply with the terms of the notices and late payments will be subject to surcharges as set out in Regulations 80-86 of the CIL Regulations 2010 (as amended). The surcharges range from £50 - £2,500.

In case of persistent non-compliance the Council may take more direct action and issue a CIL Stop Notice which prohibits development from continuing until payment is made and the stop notice is withdrawn.

The Council can also apply to the magistrates' court allowing it to seize and sell assets of the liable party and in very small number of cases apply to send the liable person to prison for up to 3 months.

If you feel that enforcement action is unwarranted or has been taken in error, you are encouraged in the first instance to contact the Council. This is because it may be a lot quicker and easier to resolve the issue by contacting the levy collecting authority first before taking more formal action.

Right of Appeal

If you consider the levy set out in your Liability Notice to be incorrect, you can ask the Council to review the calculation. Such a request must be made in writing within 28 days of the date on which the Liability Notice was issued. You may also submit appropriate evidence to support your request to the Council. The Council will notify you of the decision of the review within 14 days of receiving your request. However, where development is commenced before you received notification of the decision, the review will lapse and the original amount will become due for payment as set out in the Demand Notice.

If you are dissatisfied with the decision of the Council's review or you have not been notified within 14 days you may appeal to the Valuations Office Agency (VOA). You can also appeal to the VOA against the apportionment of liability.

You can appeal to the Planning Inspectorate against a surcharge or if you consider a levy enforcement action to be unwarranted or taken in error.

Frequently Asked Questions

Please refer to ID: 25 of the Governments Planning Practice Guidance.


SAMM Tariff Guidance