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West of England Strategic Planning

West of England Strategic Planning 2020-12-15T10:24:49+00:00

The West of England Combined Authority (WECA) and its constituent authorities are working together, along with North Somerset Council, to address the region’s strategic housing, planning and infrastructure needs.

Spatial Development Strategy (SDS)

We need a large-scale plan to make sure future development in the region provides the right kind of jobs, homes and transport links in the right places. The Spatial Development Strategy will set out the vision for how people will live, work and play in the West of England over the next 20 years and will help us deliver our commitment to achieve carbon neutrality by 2030. It will influence where the homes and jobs in each local area will go and will be important in shaping future decisions on development.

The strategy will cover the area of the West of England Combined Authority (WECA) area, which includes Bath & North East Somerset, Bristol and South Gloucestershire Councils.

How can I get involved?

In November 2020 we asked people living and working in the West of England for their views about the future of the region, to ensure the region is a greener, more connected place to live and work. Along with technical studies and evidence, the feedback will help shape the Spatial Development Strategy.

The results of this engagement will help shape the draft SDS. There will be further opportunity to comment on the Spatial Development Strategy in Autumn 2021, when the draft plan and technical evidence will be subject to a 12 week statutory consultation.

Taking part in consultation on the SDS will be an important way to have your say and influence where homes and jobs will be provided in the future. Find out more. (PDF 103kb) (PDF 103kb)


Public engagement
Autumn 2020 – Summer 2021
Second half of 2021
  • Online survey and engagement in Autumn 2020
  • Ongoing stakeholder engagement on evidence base
  • Residents and stakeholders kept informed of progress
  • Statutory consultation on draft plan
  • Opportunity to comment on the proposed plan and supporting evidence through formal consultation
  • Plan examination by a panel of planning inspectors
  • There will be opportunities for the public to participate in the plan examination process, led by inspectors.


If you wish to be kept up to date with the SDS and strategic planning matters please subscribe here for updates (if you cannot view the embedded form, please sign up via this link.

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Your information will be held by WECA, who will use this to update you on strategic planning in the West of England region, and inform you of relevant future consultations. Your information will be held for no more than five years, at which point you will be asked whether you wish to remain on the mailing list. If you have previously been on the mailing list to receive updates on the Joint Spatial Plan, you will not automatically continue to receive updates on joint planning – you will need to opt-in to do so. WECA may share your information with the Combined Authority unitary authorities (B&NES, Bristol, and South Gloucestershire). WECA may at times engage with external consultants as part of the plan making process, and therefore there may be times when details will be shared with those working on behalf of WECA and the West of England unitary authorities. They will not be shared with any other third party, or for any purpose unrelated to strategic planning. Your details will be stored securely in line with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and only accessed by authorised personnel who have received appropriate training in data management. You have the option to opt out of this mailing list at any time by clicking unsubscribe at the footer of any email communications.

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Councils’ Local Plans

The SDS will be a high-level strategic plan. Each council will also develop Local Plans, that will need to be consistent with this work.

For up to date information on the WECA area Local Plans follow the links below:

North Somerset Local Plan

North Somerset will not be included in the SDS and are taking forward their Local Plan. If you want to take part in the North Somerset Local Plan consultation, please visit  www.n-somerset.gov.uk/newlocalplan.

Statement of Common Ground & Shared Strategic Evidence Base

The WECA area ‘Statement of Common Ground’ sets out the full range of cross-boundary matters that are currently being worked on by the authorities, and how we are doing so together with partners and neighbouring authorities as part of the preparation of the SDS and Local Plans.

Much of this collaborative working at present focusses on compiling a shared strategic evidence base on needs, capacity, and possible spatial opportunities. This includes strategic infrastructure investment studies in cross boundary areas, notably the North Fringe and SW Bristol which is being funded by the Investment Fund. This evidence base will be an input to both the SDS and Local Plans.

Future of the region survey