Amendments to permitted development rights have now been introduced (coming into force on 1 October) which include deemed permission for the provision within the cartilage of a dwelling house between it and the highway of a hard surface which, if over 5 square metres in extent, is either permeable or will direct water run-off to a permeable or porous area . DCLG have also issued on 10 September guidance on the subject.

http://www.opsi.gov.uk/si/si2008/pdf/uksi_20082362_en.pdf

http://www.communities.gov.uk/publications/planningandbuilding/pavingfrontgardens