Portishead Branch Line – MetroWest Phase 1: decision deadline extended

Portishead Branch Line – MetroWest Phase 1: decision deadline extended

I have been asked by my right honourable friend, the Secretary of State to make this written ministerial statement. This statement concerns the application made by North Somerset District Council under the Planning Act 2008 for the construction of a new railway on the trackbed on the former branch line from Bristol to Portishead.

Under section 107(1) of the Planning Act 2008, the Secretary of State must make his decision within 3 months of receipt of the examining authority’s report unless exercising the power under section 107(3) to extend the deadline and make a statement to the House of Parliament announcing the new deadline.

The Secretary of State received the examining authority’s report on the Portishead Branch Line – MetroWest Phase 1 development consent order application on 19 July 2021 and, following an earlier extension of 4 months to allow further consideration of environmental matters, the current deadline for a decision is 19 April 2022.

The deadline for the decision is now to be extended to 19 February 2023 (an extension of 7 months) to allow North Somerset District Council further time to demonstrate that funding for the entire scheme has been secured.

The decision to set the new deadline is without prejudice to the decision on whether to grant or refuse development consent for the above application.

Published 19 April 2022

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