This section on protected areas only explains protection that is given through the planning system, either through national legislation or by your local planning authority. It does not deal with protection that might exist for example through covenants imposed by previous landowners.
Protected areas can have two types of restriction:
(a) Legal restrictions on what you (or your neighbours) can do without planning permission.
(b) Policy restrictions on what you (or your neighbours) can do with planning permission.
Legal restrictions are imposed automatically once an area receives a particular designation. Policy restrictions will apply to any planning applications that are made in the area, and will vary depending on what policies are contained in the authority's Local Plan.