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Early Community Engagement Guidance

Find out about our new Early Community Engagement Guidance for applicants and developers which will be launched on 21 February.

Published: 3 February 2022

Last updated: 24 February 2022

About the new guidance

The guidance has been designed to assist applicants and developers, their agents, and community representatives to more clearly understand the council's expectations for planning pre-application engagement. The guide supports developers to deliver earlier, more inclusive and more transparent and responsive community engagement in Westminster on their emerging development proposals. The guidance is now available to read at the link below:

Using the guidance

The guidance provides a framework to support applicants and developers to undertake community engagement at the earliest stage in the preparation of new development proposals. Community engagement should occur at the earliest possible stage and prior to initial engagement with the council through its planning pre-application advice service.

The guidance highlights best practice digital and in person methods for community engagement and identifies how best to engage groups and individuals from across different communities, including those that are less often heard from on. 

When seeking planning pre-application advice we will expect applicants and developers to provide details of the engagement they have undertaken and the feedback they have received in an Early Engagement Strategy. The guidance provides advice on what an Early Engagement Strategy should include.

Where community engagement has been undertaken, our validation checklists require applications to be accompanied by a Statement of Community Involvement explaining the community engagement that has been undertaken and how the proposal has evolved in response to the feedback from engagement.

Developing the guidance

The guidance was developed following multiple phases of consultation with community and developer representatives during 2021. You can read more about the development of the guidance by visiting the links below to the Planning and City Development Committee meetings held in March and October 2021 to which the emerging draft guidance was reported: