Localism Act Investing in Bristol

Andrew Myland
Bristol’s new mayor highlighted the city’s growth potential at the recent Constructing Excellence Bristol Club’ Annual Conference.

Faithful+Gould sponsors conference

I enjoyed attending the lively Constructing Excellence Bristol Club Annual Conference, alongside my Faithful+Gould colleagues Chris Haines and Chris Rogers. Our Bristol office sponsored the event, held at the Watershed on Bristol’s historic Harbourside.

The conference theme was Local Heroes and one of the topics discussed was the 2011 Localism Act. We considered how the legal framework based on the Act will be interpreted by Bristol as a city and what this means for the construction industry.

The Localism Act 2011

The Act aims to give new powers and freedoms to local authorities and local people, encouraging creative and innovative ways of working, to drive down costs through efficiencies.

The Localism Act reflects the key roles cities can play in driving economic growth. The Act aims to give new powers and freedoms to local authorities and local people, encouraging creative and innovative ways of working, to drive down costs through efficiencies. The Bill has already been significant locally, allowing the people of Bristol to choose their Mayor.

The government intends that this directly elected mayoral model will create more visible and local leadership, encouraging economic growth and boosting democratic engagement.

Bristol is ‘open for business’

Bristol has tremendous growth potential and, as George Ferguson was at pains to point out, is ‘open for business’.

The conference’s overriding message was the need to encourage investment and development in Bristol, by promoting the building of new houses, schools, commercial premises and, especially, investing in infrastructure in and around the city.

Simplifying planning

There is a realisation nationally that the planning process needs to be simplified. One of George Ferguson’s first tasks as Mayor of Bristol is to tackle the planning process and make changes to the planning committee, to make the process more transparent and help to clear blockages to potential development.

Bristol is close to our hearts at Faithful+Gould

Faithful+Gould was formed in Bristol in 1947 and my colleagues and I feel passionate about the city’s future. 

The recent political change in Bristol should enable a great deal of localised red tape to be ’cut through’, which can only be a good thing. I’d expect this to encourage new development in and around Bristol and the South West.

The recent political change in Bristol should enable a great deal of localised red tape to be ’cut through’, which can only be a good thing. I’d expect this to encourage new development in and around Bristol and the South West.

The major public sector infrastructure projects and programmes of work, such as Bristol City Council’s Primary Schools Places, where Faithful+Gould’s cost managers, project managers and building surveyors in Bristol are already involved, will increase expenditure from the public purse. The financial and development incentives provided to private clients and developers should generate growth within the construction industry.

The conference was an excellent opportunity to engage with the plans the Mayor and key decision makers have in mind for Bristol. It was also great to network with local stakeholders and demonstrate that, just like Bristol as a city, Faithful+Gould in Bristol is also ‘open for business’ and ready to listen, advise and assist.