Property to let and planning permission?

Hi, I have a house that has a seperate Annexe/ Studio flat built above a double garage. The garage is a seperate block to our main house (at the end of the garden). I thought I could let this studio flat out, we have to pay separate council tax for it, the council tax also has it as a separate address i.e. The Annexe at 10Somehwere street, etc etc and home insurance companies have said as it has separate council tax it needs separate insurance. I had a man round from the planning department investigating a complaint that I wanted to let the Annexe out. Turns out I am not allowed to let it out and I would need to have separate planning permission for a change of use of the building. How can I check what planning permission the building has? I was also told that if I did apply for change of building purpose the local council would most likely refuse to which I could then appeal the refusal.

Other people on my estate have similar properties that they have let out without problem, legally do I have a leg to stand on if I get issued with a fine?

Thanks in advance and Merry Xmas.

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