Planning Policies


BOB has created the following diagram to help identify some planning policies and how they relate to each other. This is BOB's personal unqualified view and is not a definitive source of information, nor is it necessarily the most recent version of documentation, but it is aimed to help encourage you to do your own research and form your own opinions. For addtional information see here.


In summary, national planning/building follows the NPPF. The Localism Act states neighbouring councils have a duty to cooperate and work together, hence the JSP. The JSP aims to address the 'local' planning/building need in the south west region, including the overspill from Bristol (which is one of the reasons why North Somerset's 'local' housing need went from 14K to 21K houses in 2014 (see video) and WSM became known as one of the fastest growing towns in Europe). The Core Strategy is North Somerset's Local Plan to address 'local' district need and the NDP is a potential option for parish councils to deal with their local need. All policies must comply with the NPPF and be in harmony with the policies in the tier above it.There are also policies relating to affordable housing and sustainability. Ironically, protecting the Green Belt around Bristol and Bath means large scale housing is now more likely in rural villages surrounding WSM.



 National Planning

Policy Framework

(NPPF) [1]

Queen's Speech

(2016) [7]

West of England &

Joint Spatial Plan [2] 

(JSP) [3] 

Govt Position of Fracking (2019) &

Planning Guidance


Neighbourhood Planning

(2014) [8]


North Somerset

Local Plan/

Core Strategy [4]


Bleadon Parish Council

Neighbourhood Development Plan [5]


NDP Impact Assessment

(2012) [9]



Parish Plan [6]


Council & Business Taxes

District Financial Incentives

New Homes Bonus,

CIL (75-85%), S106 [12]

BPC PreceptGrants

Govt Financial Incentives 

Community Infrastructure Levy CIL (15-25%) [10]




[1]  "The National Planning Policy Framework sets out government's planning policies for England and how these are expected to be applied". Revised NPPF July 2018 Blog and NPPF Glossary.


[2] The West of England Joint Spatial Plan is open to public consultation from 22 Nov 2017 - 10 Jan 2018. It "... will set out the overall amount of new homes and business development and where it should be located across the West of England area, as well as the important schools, transport, community facilities and green spaces needed to support that growth." and West of England Nov 2020 consutlation


[3] The JSP is to be created by a collaboration of North Somerset, Bristol, Bath & NE Somerset and South Gloucestershire Councils (These councils were formerly Avon County Council before it was abolished in 1996). More info on BOB here. and West of England Nov 2020 consutlation.


[4] The NSC Local Plan 2036 - Generating Ideas is open to public consultation from 21 Nov 2017 - 10 Jan 2018. "It will review and roll-forward policies and allocations in existing development plan documents and plan for the housing, jobs and infrastructure set out in the Joint Spatial Plan" Other Planning Policy information can be found here. [Local Plan 2038 Consultation - NOV20]


[5] BPC has been working towards creating a NDP for Bleadon since July 2017and created its Designated Area in Sept 2017. BPC 'look to hold' Its first public consultation in the New Year/2018. Additonal NDP info on BOB here.


[6] BPC's NDP Designated Area submission indicated that "The Neighbourhood Plan will make reference to the Bleadon Parish Plan which was completed in 2009"


[7] Queen's speech refered to the Neighbourhood Planning & Infrastructure Bill which includes "Measures to reform and speed up the planning process ...".


[8] Additional information on NDPs can be found on BOB here.


[9] One of the key documents to understanding the Government's plan for development/housing, which outlines Option 3, cost savings, the NDP and speeding up of the planning process. See also other NDP and Planning related information on BOB and Cornwall's view of costs.


[10] CIL Table of Financial Percentages. from Govt website (PDF) Additional information on CIL, costs, grants and planners can be found on BOB here.


[11] Government guidance and decision making, and planning guidance documents relating to fracking. Also Guardian article"High court rules government's fracking guidelines 'unlawful'" (March 2019) and The Consultation Institute: "Government axes 'pro-fracking' paragraph from NPPF following court defeat" (June 2019). Fracking Licences in Bleadon.


[12] House of Commons New Homes Bonus Overview and Document. Additional info on BOB and S106 (PDF)




Central Government related information
District/Unitary related information
Parish Council related information




Guidance Extract
Government Guidance on Neighbourhood Planning Sept 2018  E.g. "Neighbourhood planning is not a legal requirement but a right which communities in England can choose to use. Communities may decide that they could achieve the outcomes they want to see through other planning routes, such as incorporating their proposals for the neighbourhood into the Local Plan, or through other planning mechanisms such as Local Development Orders and supplementary planning documents or through pre-application consultation on development proposals. Communities and local planning authorities should discuss the different choices communities have to achieving their ambitions for their neighbourhood."
Government Guidance on Neighbourhood Planning Sept 2018 E.g. "What is the role of a parish or town council in neighbourhood planning? … “The relationship between any group and the formal functions of the town or parish council should be transparent to the wider public … The terms of reference for a steering group or other body should be published and the minutes minutes of meetings made available to the public.”
Good Councillor Guide on Neighbourhood Planning 2017 E.g. "The terms of reference for a steering group or other body should be published and the minutes of meetings made available to the public. It should be noted that although the steering group may undertake work on the neighbourhood plan, the town and parish council is the body ultimately accountable for the formal stages of the neighbourhood plan."
Good Councillor Guide on Neighbourhood Planning 2017 E.g. "Transparency is a key requirement of the process and will not only help build relationships but also help ensure statutory public consultation requirements are met. Declarations of councillor interests should be clearly recorded at every relevant plan meeting. Such declarations should be in harmony with the council’s public register of councillor interests. Minutes of all meetings should be published online and key decisions and actions recorded. An effective public audit trail of a councillor’s contribution to the preparation of a plan will build confidence in his or her input and help protect the councillor in the event of any dispute."
Good Councillor Guide 2018 E.g. "... review your council’s role in the planning system including neighbourhood plans and Introduce parish plans and the Local Council Award Scheme."
Good Councillor Guide 2018 E.g "A parish plan is a community plan and not a land use plan. It is a set of policies and an action plan for the next few years covering a much wider range of issues such as housing, the local economy and transport. It is a good idea to draw up a plan, whatever the size of your community."
Bleadon Parish Plan/103 Improvements E.g. "Through the Planning process vigorously question all development outside the Village Settlement … Ensure that all new development remains within the Village Settlement Boundary
National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF)
E.g. "The National Planning Policy Framework sets out the Government’s planning policies for England and how these should be applied. It provides a framework within which locally-prepared plans for housing and other development can be produced" Revised NPPF info.
Joint Spatial Plan (JSP)

E.g. "Its purpose is to provide a strategic, overarching vision and framework to help deliver the number of new homes, land for employment purposes and the supporting infrastructure that we anticipate will be needed over the next 20 years. The JSP will provide a strategy to inform the review of the councils'."