South Gloucestershire Local Plan 2020
Consultation and engagement
Call for Sites
A ‘call for sites’ was open from 7 July 2020 to 20 October 2020. The period for submitting sites has now closed.
We are currently registering and processing all sites received. For further information on how the ‘call for sites’ informs the Local Plan 2020 you can read the frequently asked questions on our call for sites 2020 consultation page.
Local Plan consultation in 2020
Later this year, we will be publishing a ‘Phase 1 – Issues and Approaches’ Local Plan consultation document. This will be the start of Local Plan 2020 process and include information about its proposed scope. This first stage of preparing the new Local Plan will not include individual sites or options for growth, change and protection. It will focus on discussing the issues and challenges that our new Local Plan will need to address and potential approaches we could take, as we plan for the future of our urban and rural communities.
We will contact everyone on our consultation database to provide full details when the consultation begins.
If you would like to sign up to our consultation database to be kept up do date with progress on the Local Plan, consultations and key updates from us email: Policy.email@example.com
Local Plan Timetable
Our current timetable for preparing our new Local Plan was agreed on 27 April and is set out in our Local Plan Delivery Programme (LPDP) which can be viewed on our Local Plan Delivery Programme page. Changes to the national planning system may impact the timeline set out, we will keep everyone updated if significant changes to the timeline are needed.
The evidence below was primarily prepared for the Local Plan 2018-36 which was linked to and guided by the withdrawn Joint Spatial Plan (JSP). As a result, any evidence that relates specifically to the JSP strategy has now been retracted. Whilst some of the retained evidence listed below refers generally to the JSP, it is considered to be relevant to support the council’s new Local Plan and is still available to view. New documents are being added that are related to the Local Plan 2020 and emerging sub regional Spatial Development Strategy (SDS). This list will be updated as new evidence is published.
Energy management, renewables and low carbon energy
- Carbon Reduction Requirement Study 2018 – joint evidence is being gathered by the West of England unitary authorities to explore the best way of reducing carbon emissions from new development through local plan policies
- Part 1 – The Cost of Carbon Reduction in New Buildings (Currie & Brown) – investigates how much it would cost for new residential and non-residential development to achieve a zero carbon standard
- Part 2 – Carbon Offsetting in the West of England (Centre for Sustainable Energy) – explores the practicalities of implementing a potential Carbon Offsetting local plan policy
- Evidence base EV charging in local plan policy 2019 – joint evidence is being gathered by the West of England unitary authorities to explore the best way of reduction carbon emissions through local plan policy
The following technical guidance and information on the avoidance, reduction and management of flood risk has been taken into account when developing the Local Plan.
South Gloucestershire strategic flood risk assessment (SFRA) level 1
South Gloucestershire strategic flood risk assessment (SFRA) level 2
Note the SFRA level 2 report errata sheet at the beginning A, B and C.
Avonmouth-Severnside strategic flood risk assessment (SFRA) level 2
In addition to referring to the SFRA, developers and applicants should also use the most recent Environment Agency flood maps “Flood Map for Planning (Rivers and Sea)”. The flood map is updated quarterly and therefore some areas of the SFRA will be superseded by more up to date mapping since the SFRA was published.
The Environment Agency’s website also maps the risk of flooding from surface water and reservoirs. The surface water mapping is not suitable for determining flood risk to individual properties, but provides an indication of whether an area may be affected by surface water flooding and to what extent.
Developers and applicants are responsible for ensuring all drainage designs, strategies and site-specific flood risk assessments are supported by the most accurate and up to date information on flood risk.
Oldbury on Severn Strategic Flood Risk Assessment – Planning Policy Statement
To avoid inappropriate development in flood risk areas, the National Planning Guidance (NPPF) (paragraphs 100-104) directs development to areas of the lowest flood risk. Development should not be allocated to high risk areas where other reasonably available sites are available in areas with a lower probability of flooding (flood zone 1), this is called the sequential test. Following the sequential test, if it is not possible for the development to be located in flood zone 1, the exception test can be applied. For the exception test to be passed, it must be demonstrated that the development provides sustainability benefits to the community which outweigh flood risk. In addition a site specific flood risk assessment (SFRA2) must demonstrate that the development will be safe for its lifetime (taking account of the vulnerability of its users), not increase flood risk elsewhere and where possible reduce flood risk overall.
Core Strategy and Policies Sites and Places Plan
The South Gloucestershire Core Strategy (adopted 2013) sets out the long term vision and spatial strategy for the area. It also sets out the strategic policies needed to deliver sustainable communities until 2027. It provides for a minimum of 28,355 homes to be built between 2006 and 2027. Applying the sequential test, the strategic housing locations identified to meet housing needs in South Gloucestershire have been proposed in areas with lower risk of flooding.
Through the location strategy set out in Core Strategy policies CS5 (Location of Development) and CS34 (Rural Areas), provision was also made to enable rural communities to identify any need for small scale additional housing to meet local needs through the Policies Sites and Places (PSP) Plan or Neighbourhood Plans.
During the preparation of the PSP Plan, Oldbury-on-Severn Parish Council identified the potential for limited additional housing to meet their local needs and provide sustainable development. The parish council, in consultation with the wider community, initially identified a need for approximately 14 dwellings over and above that which would come forward under existing planning policies and permitted development including redevelopment, conversion and infill. In response to this the council carried out an assessment of potential housing sites at Oldbury on Severn in December 2014. This process however identified significant constraints/issues principally in relation to flood risk – see Proposed Submission PSP Plan March 2015 (para 11.1-11.13) and supporting Sustainability Appraisal (p 67-75) South Gloucestershire Online Consultations – Draft Policies, Sites and Places Plan Summer 2014 – CONSULTATION CLOSED – Consultation Homepage
In summary the PSP Plan evidence concluded that Oldbury village is at risk, but is defended from tidal flooding. The highest flood risk affecting the area is classified as high probability having a 1 in 100 or greater annual probability of river flooding, also known as functional floodplain (flood zone 3b (FZ3b)). This area is associated with flooding from Oldbury Naite Rhine and Pickedmoor Lane Rhine, which also impacts parts of Chapel Road and Pickedmoor Lane. All main infrastructure, including highway routes which provide access to the village are affected by flood risk, classified as either FZ3a or 3b.
There are two areas of lower flood risk in Oldbury. “dry island” is adjacent to the Toot Scheduled Ancient Monument in the centre of the village and is surrounded by extensive areas of higher flood risk. The second is to the south and is subject to Green Belt and significant heritage constraints. Potential development sites in Oldbury on Severn unaffected by flood risk and meeting the requirements of the Sequential Test could not therefore be identified. As a result of the flooding and other constraints, and with the support of the Environmental Agency, the PSP Plan did not allocate sites for additional homes in Oldbury.
If a specific local need was identified in future to meet the first part of the exception test, further work through a detailed Strategic Flood Risk Assessment (SFRA2) could be undertaken to improve understanding of the flood risk. This would then inform the second part of the exception test and help investigate the potential for limited further development of the village.
The Oldbury on Severn strategic flood risk assessment 2
Following the decision not to allocate through the PSP Plan, in 2017 we commissioned the Oldbury on Severn SFRA2 together with the Environment Agency and parish council to provide further detailed evidence supporting the potential for small scale housing development at Oldbury on Severn.
Oldbury on Severn neighbourhood plan
The village has taken up the option of neighbourhood planning and the neighbourhood area was designated on 27 November 2016.
If the neighbourhood planning process in Oldbury confirms a need for limited housing to meet the specific requirements of the village (supported by a technical evidence base and tested through the examination process), this will provide the justification for part 1 of the exception test i.e. that the wider sustainability benefits to be afforded to the village as a result of plan led development outweigh the flood risk, although the justification remains to be tested through a neighbourhood Plan Examination process.
It should be noted this has yet to be undertaken and is intended to be completed through the preparation of the Oldbury Neighbourhood Plan.
The main purpose of this strategic flood risk assessment 2 is to inform the second part of the exception test for the neighbourhood planning process. This will ensure that any potential new development would be in areas with least flood risk and safe for its lifetime (taking account of the vulnerability of its users), not increase flood risk elsewhere and where possible, reduce flood risk overall.
The council considers that the exception test part 1 will not have been met until the neighbourhood planning process has been completed. We are committed to supporting the parish council to undertake this work through the neighbourhood planning process.
The Joint Strategic Plan (JSP) and new South Gloucestershire Local Plan
The JSP and new Local Plan will update the strategic housing policies currently in the Core Strategy to meet housing need to 2036. This includes an element of non-strategic housing in rural areas to meet the needs of the district (allocations of 10 homes and above). In line with national policy on flood risk and the sequential test, Oldbury on Severn will unlikely be considered for additional housing through the district wide plan making process, given the range of other location options situated in a lower risk of flooding and with higher levels of sustainable access to key services and facilities.
The South Gloucestershire Council Level 2 Strategic Flood Risk Assessment for Oldbury on Severn can be viewed below.
Green infrastructure - 2020 update
The West of England authorities Joint Green Infrastructure Strategy (JGIS) sets out key priorities and will be the basis for identifying opportunities for enhancing and delivering green infrastructure throughout the district.
More information can be found on the West of England Combined Authority website
Gypsy and Traveller accommodation
Habitats Regulations Assessment
Housing and economic land availability assessment
The purpose of the housing and economic land availability assessment (HELAA) is to identify a future supply of land which is available and suitable for housing and economic development, over the period of our Local Plan.
Further information on the HELAA process is available at GOV.UK.
To inform the HELAA a call for sites is currently open for further information check our Call for sites 2020 consultation page.
Local green spaces and designations
Local green space designation provides special protection against development for green areas of importance to local communities. Since the designation must conform with national planning policy, it is not suitable for all green spaces.
A list of protected spaces within South Gloucestershire is available in our Policies, Sites and Places (PSP) plan. Within this plan, policy PSP4 Designated Local Green Spaces outlines the type of protection to these spaces.
During public examination of the PSP plan, we agreed to reassess all nominated spaces that were not designated in this plan through the development of our new Local Plan (2018-2036) .
Local green space designations interactive map
The following information on local green space designations applies to the end of the PSP plan process. The reassessment of spaces is not yet complete.
You can view an interactive map to display:
- the local green spaces designated in the PSP plan and which are subject to Policy PSP4 Local Green Space Designations
- the nominated (but not designated) spaces which will be reassessed when developing the new Local Plan. These spaces are displayed with information outlining why they were not designated in the PSP plan. This information is also available as a spreadsheet.
Comments and nominations were invited on local green space designations as part of the February-April 2018 Local Plan consultation, as well as the submission of new spaces. This consultation is now closed.
For further information on the reassessment and designation process see guidance on local green space designations.
We are the minerals planning authority for South Gloucestershire.
To ensure that we plan for a steady supply of sufficient aggregates in the area, we
- prepare a Local Aggregate Assessment (LAA)
- participate in operating an Aggregate Working Party (AWP)
- make provision for land won aggregates in our Local Plan
Local Aggregate Assessment
The 2008-2017 West of England Local Aggregate Assessment (LAA) is the latest information on permitted reserves and production for crushed rock as of the end of 2017.
The assessment has been prepared jointly by the four unitary authorities
- Bath and North East Somerset Council
- Bristol City Council
- North Somerset Council
- South Gloucestershire Council
which together comprise the West of England sub region. The assessment is part of the evidence base used to inform the Local Plan for each of these authorities.
- 2005-2014 West of England Local Aggregate Assessment
- 2006-2015 West of England Local Aggregate Assessment
- 2007-2016 West of England Local Aggregate Assessment
Aggregate Working Party
We participate in the South West Aggregates Working Party.
Our local minerals development plan currently comprises the
We have also published a background paper relating to minerals.
Sustainability appraisal 2020 update
Alongside preparing our Local Plan 2020, we will be undertaking a Sustainability Appraisal (SA) to understand the economic, environmental and social effects of a Local Plan from the outset.
Sustainability Appraisal – Scoping Report
The first stage of this process is to prepare a SA Scoping Report, which sets out the scope of what will be included within the SA of the Local Plan.
An important part of preparing the Scoping Report is the requirement to publish a draft Scoping Report and invite comments from three statutory bodies (Environment Agency, Historic England, Natural England) over a five week period. We are consulting the statutory bodies on our first draft Scoping Report from 8 October, until 12 November 2020.
Following this period, the Scoping Report will be updated and then re-published alongside our Local Plan consultation document later this year.