Frequently Asked Questions

What is the boundary of the Neighbourhood Plan?

The Neighbourhood Plan Boundary is the same as the Portishead Parish boundary. (Click Here)

Who is responsible for preparing the Neighbourhood Plan?

Portishead Town Council is the ‘qualifying body’ which has received approval from North Somerset Council to prepare the Portishead Neighbourhood Plan. It has set up a Steering Group made up of a number of Town Councillors plus some Portishead residents who have volunteered to get involved. We have set up five Working Groups reporting to the Steering Group each specialising in a particular issue, namely housing, transport, infrastructure, the environment & heritage and the local economy. Anyone can volunteer to join a working group and contribute to the plan.

How can I get involved?

Complete the form on the ‘Get Involved’ page or follow us on Facebook (Click Here)

How can I comment?

By email to hello@portishead plan.uk or through our Facebook page and by completing surveys which will be circulated to all Portishead residents. When the draft plan is published, there will be formal consultation.

What are the main issues facing Portishead?

Portishead has seen a massive housebuilding programme over the last twenty years which has left it with a large infrastructure deficit covering all aspects such as transport, health services, education, business premises, parking, community services and leisure facilities.

Housing is expensive. Many younger adults cannot afford to buy or rent properties in Portishead leading to an increasingly aging population. Accessing affordable accommodation is a crucial issue for many.

The town is encircled by either the Bristol Channel or green belt and there are now few remaining places for housing development, even if that were desirable.

As there are few employment opportunities at present in Portishead, much of the working population commutes into Bristol and other outside areas daily. The road access into and out of Portishead is limited and congested, with improvements to the M5 motorway junction of critical concern.

The railway link into Bristol is still some way in the future, and other public transport is not sufficiently attractive to persuade people to use it. Cycling is becoming more popular but mainly as a leisure activity.

The lack of parking facilities is causing major problems with too much on street parking blocking roads and preventing access by buses and emergency vehicles. Congestion around local schools at start and finish time causes major problems.

The High street is more prosperous than in many towns, but too many charity shops and too many empty premises largely a result of high business rates is resulting in a decline in prosperity for the town centre.

Where can I find information on Neighbourhood Planning across the country?

The following websites provide useful information :
https://neighbourhoodplanning.org/toolkits-and-guidance/create-neighbourhood-plan-step-by-step-roadmap-guide/
https://www.gov.uk/guidance/neighbourhood-planning--2
http://www.cpre.org.uk/resources/housing-and-planning/planning/item/2689-how-to-shape-whereyou-live-a-guide-to-neighbourhood-planning

Can a Neighbourhood Plan policy be over-ridden by developers or other authorities?

Once the Neighbourhood Plan has been approved by a referendum of all Portishead residents, the local planning authority will adopt your Neighbourhood Plan, including policies (if drafted) which will take precedence over policies in the Local Plan. Section 70(2) of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 (as amended) provides that a local planning authority must have regard to a post-examination draft neighbourhood development plan. Planning applications will be determined by the local planning authority but will take into account policies in your Neighbourhood Plan as well as the Local Plan.

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.