What is the Neighbourhood Plan?

Portishead Town Council has started preparing a long overdue Neighbourhood Plan for Portishead.

Neighbourhood Plans for towns and villages were introduced by legislation in 2011. They give local communities the power to shape the development and growth of their area. Once adopted they form part of the basis for determining planning applications and protecting green spaces. A Neighbourhood Plan is fundamentally about the development and use of land, for example the location and type of housing, regeneration of derelict land, infrastructure, green space, location of retail and employment, and conservation.

- It decides where and what type of development will happen in Portishead
- It identifies where new shops, homes, offices and other development can be built
- It influences what new buildings should look like
- It influences what infrastructure should be provided
- It raises the revenue received by our Town Council from the Community Infrastructure Levy paid by developers from 15% to 25% of the total, the rest goes to North Somerset.
- Most importantly, it carries real legal weight. North Somerset District Council and planning inspectors must take note of the policies in the Portishead Neighbourhood Plan.

Preparation of a Neighbourhood Plan requires a huge amount of time and effort both from the Town Council and the Community. However, Portishead is now one of the last towns in North Somerset to have made this commitment, and without the protection of a Neighbourhood Plan we are vulnerable to aggressive and inappropriate planning applications for large numbers of houses. It is well known that large developers hone in on towns like ours.

The Portishead Neighbourhood Plan will be based on our engagement with local people. It will be shaped by Portishead for Portishead. Our plan will be based on what the people of Portishead want for the town, not on what Portishead Town Council thinks the town needs.

Portishead Town Council, working for you

Some facts about neighbourhood plans


A Neighbourhood Plan on its own can’t prevent development, but it does tell developers the way we want our town to be.

It must be considered by the planning authority when deciding whether new developments are to be approved.
The result is that developers must adhere to the vision that the people of Portishead have for their town.


What’s the difference between the Portishead Neighbourhood Plan and the Local Plan?

The Neighbourhood Plan is based on engagement with our residents. It is therefore a true reflection of what Portishead people want for the future of their town.

The Local Plan is produced for the entire district of North Somerset and takes Government guidelines for future development into account. It does not cover certain aspects such as the character and appearance of any future development.