A New Garden Village in South Gloucestershire?


The West of England Authorities, consisting of South Gloucestershire, North Somerset, Bristol City, and Bath and North East Somerset Unitary councils have produced a plan to deliver at least 105,500 homes in the period between 2016 and 2036 as well as plans for new employment opportunities, transport and other infrastructure needs.

At the start of that plan making process, as the first stage in the creation of a Joint Spatial Plan for the four local authority areas, the Councils invited responses to an “issues and options” consultation; which ended in January 2016. In response……

In response, the Tortworth Estate, working with Hunter Page Planning Ltd, submitted a concept document for a new “Garden Village” at Buckover. Crucially the site is not in the Green Belt and benefits from being under the ownership of just one party – Tortworth Estate.

We set out the background, rationale and vision for a possible new garden village, of up to 3,000 homes with employment, health, and education facilities. Together with the necessary transportation and communications infrastructure, there will also be retail provision, community facilities and green open spaces.

The Tortworth Estate embraces the Garden Village concept because it accords with our sustainable beliefs, and the principles behind our successful estate management. It is taking a refreshing look at how we plan for the homes we will need in the future and begins with what is, in effect, a largely blank canvass. This avoids poor planning by ensuring that there is a holistic approach planned from the outset rather than trying to deliver large-scale housing bolted on to the edge of our towns and villages.

Following lengthy public consultation and full endorsement by the West of England Authorities the Joint Spatial Plan was submitted to the Secretary of State for Examination on the 13th April 2018. Buckover Garden Village was chosen as one of the five South Gloucestershire Strategic Development Locations (SDLs) to deliver 3,000 houses, employment opportunities and key infrastructure; of which 1,500 houses are to be built within the lifetime of the Joint Spatial Plan.

Full details of the JSP can be found here:- www.jointplanningwofe.org.uk

The next stage of the JSP will be for the Government to review the Plan and appoint an Independent Planning Inspector to conduct an Examination in Public (EiP), likely to happen this autumn. It is then for the Inspector to report back to the local authorities on their findings. Finally, each local authority will consider whether or not to adopt the plan.

During the period May 2016 to January 2018 the Estate devoted much time to meeting various local groups, residents, Parish and Town Councils and businesses face-to-face to understand the challenges that exist at the moment, and the opportunities that people tell us about for the future. Our aim is to work in a collaborative manner. We have faced challenging questions but also received constructive help and advice on what is required should the Garden Village proceed. In addition, we are exploring what makes a successful community, how you create that community from scratch and how you ensure it remains sustainable into the future. Our firm belief is that we need to “complement rather than compete” with local facilities and communities already in place.

All this work culminated in us beginning a series of consultation events in April 2018. The relevant press announcement can be found on the attachments section below.

The first event was on the 17th April and was targeted specifically at representatives from local groups, organisations and service providers. A full report on this workshop will be published shortly. Further events will focus on individual households as well as continuing to engage with stakeholders on a one-to-one basis. At an appropriate time, and before a planning application is submitted, a full public exhibition, open to everyone, will be held.

An important milestone was reached in October 2016 when the draft site allocations in the West of England Joint Spatial Strategy (JSP) were endorsed for public consultation. Buckover was identified for a potential new Garden Village of up to 2,200 homes.

On the 24th July 2017 the Tortworth Estate announced St Modwen as its partner to deliver the Buckover Garden Village concept. For further details please see Media Statement under Attachments below.

On the 22nd November 2017 the Public Engagement process was launched by the West of England Authorities on the Final Draft of West of England Joint Spatial Plan. This engagement ended on the 10th January 2018.

On April 13th 2018 the West of England Authorities submitted the Joint Spatial Plan to the Secretary of State. A media statement from the four authorities can be found here:


What Happens Next?
A significant amount of technical work has been carried out since 2016 to demonstrate the deliverability of the Garden Village, and that work continues. We are therefore pleased that the Buckover Garden Village was one of the five Strategic Development Locations in South Gloucestershire contained in the JSP submitted to the Secretary of State.

We recognise the importance of the forthcoming Examination in Public and await that process to begin. Our consultation and engagement work will also continue so that we can hear from as many people as possible about the proposals for a Garden Village at Buckover.

In the meantime, we still want to hear your views, and thank you to all those who have already been in touch, and we will keep you updated on this web page.

If you would like to send us your thoughts, please email us at bgv@mediationinplanning.co.uk

EQn Buckover Workshop Round Up 7 Aug 2018.pdf113.3 KB
First Workshop (April) 2018 report.PDF7.67 MB
Press Release STM2771-Buckover workshop FINAL 20 Mar 2018.pdf170.82 KB
South Gloucestershire new Local Plan drop-in Events - Issued 21 Sept 2017.pdf98.92 KB
Media Statement - Tortworth Estate Selects St Modwen - Issued 24 July 2017 .pdf326.56 KB
Notes Tortworth Estate meeting 151116 - Issued 15 Mar 2017.pdf2.67 MB
Media Statment - Statment of Clarification - Issued 15 March 2017.pdf184.75 KB
HCA letter - Issued 15 Mar 2017.pdf295.49 KB
Media Statment re Learning from the Community v4 - Issued 23 Nov16.pdf58.71 KB
South Glos JSP Event Posters - Issued 8 Nov 2016.PDF823.73 KB
Concept Document - Issued 4 Nov 2016.pdf6.81 MB
Public Engagement Timetable - Issued 23 Aug 2016.pdf136.79 KB
New media statement - Issued 24 May 2016.pdf39.13 KB

Process Timelines

We have put together a timeline to show significant events during the process:

  • 2015
  • 2016
    • January
      • Estate submits responses to JSP and JTS consultation which includes Buckover Village Garden -see documents on this page
      • West of England Joint Spatial Plan: Issues and Options consultation closes
      • West of England Joint Transport Study (JTS): Issues and Options consultation closes
    • May
      • West of England releases responses to JPS and JTS consultations
    • June
    • July
      • South Gloucestershire Council Local Plan: Policy, Sites and Places formal consultation commences
      • Estate attends Falfield Parish Council meeting: http://www.falfield.org.uk/cMinutes190716.pdf
      • South Gloucestershire Council submit Expression of Interest: Locally-Led Garden Villages, Towns and Cities
        to The Department for Communities and Local Government - see document on this site.
    • August
    • September
      • Estate submits response to Local Plan: Policy, Sites & Places consultation
      • South Gloucestershire Council Local Plan: Policy Sites and Places formal consultation closes
      • Estate meets with Falfield Parish Councillors, referenced at this link but full notes yet to be published: http://www.falfield.org.uk/dMinutes200916.pdf
      • West of England Planning, Housing and Communities Board and Joint Transport Executive Committee agenda and papers released for October meeting. Buckover Garden Village included draft JSP consultation.
    • October
    • November
  • 2017
    • January
    • February
      • Estate receives official notes of the meeting between Falfield Parish Council and the Tortworth Estate held in September 2016.  Please see attachments above.
    • March
    • July
      • On the 24th July 2017 the Tortworth Estate announced St Modwen as its partner to deliver the Buckover Garden Village concept.  For further details please see Media Statement under Attachments above.
    • September/October
      • South Gloucestershire Council’s Public Consultation on new Local Plan and Strategic Development Locations
    • November
      • All four Councils making up the West of England Partnership voted to approve and press ahead with the draft Joint Spatial Plan (JSP) which outlines how 105,000 houses are to built across the West of England area by 2036, including 32,500 new homes to be built in South Gloucestershire. Buckover Garden Village remains in the JSP as a committed allocation. The plan is now open for consultation (see above right) before being submitted to the Secretary of State for approval in 2018.
      • Master Planning work and meetings continue.
      • Specialist technical and environmental companies continue with the site investigation, transport and sustainability matters.
      • Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, Rt Hon Sajid Javid MP pledges action to “fix the broken housing market”. Full speech can be found here:-


    • December
      • Master Planning work and meetings continue.
      • Work on future Community Governance for Buckover Garden Village continues.
  • 2018
    • January
      • Public Consultation on the West of England Joint Spatial Plan (JSP) ends.
    • March
    • April
      • South Gloucestershire Council, as part of their West of England Joint Spatial Plan and their own Local Plan process, begin a series of "Stakeholder Workshops” for various Strategic Development Locations (SDL's) to run over the Spring and Summer. Their first event will be focussed on the future growth at Charfield. The other SDL’s are:- Coalpit Heath, Buckover Garden Village, Thornbury, and Yate and Chipping Sodbury.
      • On 17th April a Buckover Garden Village workshop was held for representatives from local groups, organisations and service providers.
      • The Rt Hon James Brokenshire MP was appointed Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government.
    • May
      • Mr Malcolm Rivett BA (Hons) MSc MRTPI and Mr Steven Lee BA (Hons) MA MRTPI were appointed as Inspectors to conduct the Examination and determine whether the JSP is sound and legally compliant.
    • July
      • Workshops held specifically for households living within, or immediately adjacent to, the proposed site. Please contact us at bgv@mediationinplanning.co.uk if you did not receive an invite and, by living within the proposed site, feel you should have been included.
    • August