Published on 12th December 2017

Joint Core Strategy logo

Following the full council meeting on Monday 11 December, Cheltenham Borough Council has unanimously voted in favour of adopting the proposed Joint Core Strategy (JCS).

Cllr Steve Jordan, leader of the council said: "Adopting the JCS has been a long and difficult process but I'm pleased we've got there. It means we are well placed to ensure we get the homes and jobs local people need up to 2031 while protecting the things that make Cheltenham an attractive place to Iive, work and visit."

During the debate, councillors expressed their thanks to local communities who had actively contributed to the different stages of plan making.

Gloucester City Council adopted the strategy on Thursday 23 November 2017 and Tewkesbury Borough Council adopted the strategy on Tuesday 5 December 2017.

More detail regarding the strategy can be found on the JCS website:

For media enquiries: Please contact Katie Sandey, communications and web team leader, on 01242 775050 or [email protected]


Notes to the editor:

What is JCS?

The Joint Core Strategy (JCS) is a really important document that will affect everyone that lives and works in Gloucester City, Cheltenham Borough and Tewkesbury Borough. It sets out the identified need and location for employment and housing sites and associated infrastructure up to 2031.

To help shape this future development, the JCS sets out a long-term vision for the area together with policies relating to important issues such as flooding, green belt and affordable housing. These policies are vital because they will essentially define what developers can and cannot do in the JCS area.

The strategy is based on an evidence base. This is a key point, because it means that our preferred approach to future development isn’t based on our opinions, but is founded on impartial and independent evidence. Examples of documents that sit within our evidence base include a green belt review, flood risk assessments, housing needs assessments, housing land availability assessments and a full review of infrastructure needs.

The JCS must also comply with national planning policy guidance set by the government and it must be based on local, statistical evidence such as population changes and economic forecasts.


Why do we need the JCS?

All councils are legally required to have a planning strategy to guide future development, so we aren’t alone.  Without a strategy, there is a risk that ad hoc development will occur and we may not be able to prevent nor control this.

A strategy will help the councils to ensure development takes place in a planned way, protecting and enhancing green infrastructure and areas of landscape while meeting the areas long term development needs.

In addition, the Government has legislated that councils must work together under the ‘duty to cooperate’ with adjoining neighbours when developing their planning strategy. Hence, the three councils agreeing to work together in order to generate a common strategy.