We feel strongly that the Knowle community should play a vital role in deciding what is best for the future of Knowle.

Knowle Neighbourhood Planning Group

About Us

Who are KNPG ?


We are a group of volunteers who live or work in Knowle. We are passionate about our local community and interested in housing, services and the space around us.

KNPG is an independent, apolitical community group of local residents. We work to get better community involvement in planning decisions affecting Knowle.

As a Neighbourhood Planning Group, we get earlier access to developers plans. We use this to encourage greater collaboration and input with developers and our local community.

We are one of local 45 Neighbourhood Planning forums across Bristol and part of the Bristol Neighbourhood Planning Network. City Council guidance expects developers to work with local planning forums like KNPG.

We are not paid as volunteers but we are fortunate to work with local residents who themselves are experts in their field – like architects, planners, surveys or builders. They help us critically assess any developers plans shared with us and we can share that with the local community.

 KNPG want to

  • Make Knowle to be a better place to live and work in
  • Keep the best of what makes Knowle a good place now
  • Know what people think about possible local changes to share and publicise.


This means that KNPG

  • Find out what it can about new plans, like the one for the Broadwalk site
  • Help local people and business understand the changes proposed
  • Collect in views and facts to spot local issues, support or objections to plans
  • Explain how to be involved and make your views known
  • Find out about planning rules, guidelines and policies and if they are being applied
  • Work with developers, the City Council and residents, sharing what we know


Anyone who lives or works in Knowle can join KNPG – including business or community organisations. It is free. 

Join us on our Facebook group https://www.facebook.com/groups/knowlenpg or email admin@knpg.co.uk or stay in touch through our web site.

KNPG is pleased to have received a small amount of funding in December 2022 to support our work from the Quartet Community Foundation..   





This is a useful summary of what is being proposed for the Broadwalk site. It is out for consultation now. It includes lots of pictures to help you understand what the proposals mean and look like.

Broadwalk Guide (opens in a new Page)

Look under ‘OUR VIEWS’ to find out more about our responses so far on the plans for Broadwalk Shopping Centre site (or Redcatch Quarter). This includes documents that explain what local residents have said to us. It also provides a summary of KNPGs current position on the plans.

Look under ‘HAVE YOUR SAY’ to find out where to find the outline planning permission plans for Broadwalk Shopping Centre that Bristol City Council is currently consulting you about. Also, where to comment and tips on how to do that. Look at our ‘Have Your Say’ leaflet that was distributed to 10,000 homes in December 2023.

Look under ‘KNOWLE DESERVES BETTER’ to see more of what KNPG has done recently. 



KNPG have felt it necessary to publicly comment on and challenge allegations made about the group and our role by Knowle’s elected Councillors – Cllr Gary Hopkins and Cllr Chris Davies. We have written to them both – and replied to the letter in the December 2022 issue of the South Bristol Voice.


The letters below were sent directly to Cllr Hopkins and Davies in late December 2022. They explain our views in more detail – and are attached as an open statement.   

Open Letter to Cllr Hopkins

Open Letter to Cllr Davies


This is the Bristol Code of Conduct that all our elected councillors sign when elected, and govern how they work.

Bristol City Council Member Code of Conduct


AN OPEN LETTER TO CLLR GARY HOPKINS – the locally elected Bristol City Councillor for Knowle,

Our response to your more recent public statements about Knowle Neighbourhood Planning Group (KNPG) – and our work responding to plans out for consultation to redevelop Broadwalk Shopping Centre. Dec 2022

Dear Cllr Hopkins,

Like much of the Knowle community, we cannot help but notice the increasing public hostility that you hold for us a resident planning forum – and as our locally elected councillors.

Your recent KCP newsletter (November, 2022) and letter to the South Bristol Voice (Cllr Hopkins, Dec 2022) now leaves us with no choice but to respond to the following plainly asserted statements about Knowle Neighbourhood Planning Group (KNPG).

1.      KNPG is anti-development of the Broadwalk Shopping Centre site.


In fact, KNPG welcomes and supports the redevelopment of Broadwalk Shopping Centre – and the provision of additional housing on the site (particularly affordable housing for local people). We welcome the investment and regeneration of Broadwalk and are committed to its future redevelopment. 

KNPG would like the developers to bring forward better plans – building fewer or no high-rise blocks and reducing density with a smaller number of flats.  We want to see more retail space as well as more resident and visitor parking spaces, amongst other things. We are one of many stakeholders saying this.

KNPG know that developers review plans and resubmit them when needed. Repeatedly stating that Broadwalk will become “derelict” because KNPG is advocating for something better for Knowle is incorrect and misleading. It also scares local people.

In fact, KNPG have met the developers 5 times in 2022. We believe we have had frank and open conversations with the developers, challenging them in some areas whilst being listened to in others. We have also seen some changes made to the plans now in front of the public and our local community that reflect our feedback.

2.      KNPG threatened to walk out of a meeting with developers if you, Cllr Hopkins, were present.


You may remember that you turned up uninvited to a private meeting that KNPG had organised with the developers in Feb 2022. When challenging your unexpected attendance, KNPG proposed that we establish a date to meet with you separately in order to ensure the planned meeting went ahead. However, our attempts to do so after that meeting were rejected or ignored.

KNPG would have done exactly the same thing if any politician, Council Officer or Stakeholder had turned up, without invitation to that or any other private meeting held with the developers

KNPG is an independent and non-political community group. We value that principle as it means we are more able to advocate clearly for Knowle. 

In recent months, KNPG have met with Green, Labour, Conservative and Lib Dems councillors who represent areas neighbouring Knowle whose residents use Broadwalk Shopping Centre.  None have asked or presumed to attend our meetings with the developers. All have been generous with their time, offered us advice, listened to our and resident concerns and shared their concerns about the widely perceived over development of the Broadwalk site – and for some, their opposition to this particular set of planning proposals.

KNPG continues to be more than willing to sit down and meet with both you and Cllr Davies as our Knowle elected councillors in order to discuss the common ground between us and share feedback with you from local people.


3.     KNPG is made up of “Labour Party Leaders” operating with “political reasons”. 


In fact, almost all of the 12 local Knowle residents in our core group are NOT members of any political party (and yes, we have asked them as a result of your statement).

Party political membership does not – and has never – played a part in KNPG internal or external discussions, public positions or views. Being independent and apolitical is a clear statement in our terms of reference – and in our public descriptions of our role. We repeatedly state that. We are not apologetic about any of KNPG’s volunteers being members of political parties – it is their right. 

KNPG deplore being used by you as a political football to score goals against political rivals of the Knowle Community Party.

It is upsetting for many to see Knowles elected councilors deflecting attention from the real issues that local people are raising about the Broadwalk Shopping Centre redevelopment.

Only 1 KNPG core group member is a member of a political party when all were asked in Nov 2022 – and that person is not in any formal leadership position in their political party.

Due to personal commitments people come and go from KNPGs core group.  We now know in a 3-month period earlier in 2022, 5 people (out of 14 then) were members of two political parties. Membership was split fairly equally between those two political parties at that time.

It is also the case that no one in KNPG is a member of your new political party Knowle Community Party (KCP). It seems to have formed in the months after you were elected as Liberal Democrats in Knowle in May 2021 and that you left shortly after your election.


4.    KNPG is “spreading scare stories” and have “misled residents”.


KNPG is very fortunate to have the support of local residents who are themselves architects, surveyors, planners, builders etc. and who are all experts in their field.  They have assisted us to understand the detail provided by the developers – and more importantly critically assess the planning proposals now out for consultation.  Consequently, the formal positions that KNPG hold are evidence based.

Many more residents have shared with KNPG what they think and why – and where there is an evidence base to support those concerns, we reflect that as part of our stated role as a Neighbourhood Planning Forum.

The advice we give to residents on how to explain their views to the City Council is based on an informed understanding of how the planning process works.

KNPG does not knowingly mislead residents or anyone else, refutes that allegation clearly and will continue to do so.

KNPG is assessing information everyday about what the Broadwalk planning proposals mean for all of us in Knowle.  We welcome other views (expert or otherwise) and information that constructively challenges or adds to our ability to accurately share information locally or respond to the planning proposals now out for consultation. 


5.   KNPG is a community group that as Knowle’s elected councilor you are now publicly advising residents you will not work with.


In fact, in opposition to this statement as our local councillor you invited KNPG to speak at your public meeting in June 2022.  We accepted your invitation and participated in good faith, but challenged your view that KNPG is “anti-development”.

KNPG was therefore particularly surprised and sad to read in November and December 2022 that you will not work with KNPG, despite the commitments that you made when signing the Code of Conduct of a Bristol City ‘Councillor. In signing it, you commit to  

The Public Life Principle of Objectively in your role as an elected Councillor to “act impartially and fairly, taking decisions on merit…without discrimination or bias”.

KNPG struggle to believe you are both being impartial or objective where our role, views and activities are concerned?

Respecting Others including “Always treating people with respect, including the organisations and public you engage with”.

KNPG do not believe we are being treated with respect.

Being Openlistening to the interests of all parties” and “taking all relevant information into consideration, remaining objective and making decision on merit”. 

KNPG do not believe we are being listened to as an interested party, or the many views of local residents we reflect and advocate for. In fact, you are stating you are not open and formally closed to this set of interests – and also consistently misrepresent KNPG’s position too. 

Offering leadership to Knowle with a duty ‘to enable and improve community cohesion”

KNPG believe it is divisive and confrontational to publicly and consistently single us out the way that you have done. We do not understand how any of your positions on the issues identified in this letter contribute to you enabling community cohesion in Knowle as our elected councilors?

In addition, City Council guidance encourages developers to work with

KNPG on planning applications affecting Knowle. We are one of 45 planning forums across Bristol that do this through the NPN (Neighbourhood Planning Network).

KNPG do not think it is unreasonable to expect our own Bristol City local councillor in Knowle to do the same – and is the case in other local Neighbourhood Planning Forums across Bristol

We respectfully state again that we at KNPG are more than willing to sit down with you and Cllr Davies from KCP to share views and hopefully reach a better relationship that truly benefits the Knowle community. We hope you agree that is what Knowle deserves. We may have different views in some areas but we also have common ground on others with regard to Broadwalk’s redevelopment.

From your concerned members of KNPG.


Find Answers Here

The residential density is important because

The developers have indicated over 2000 people

KNPG is a 

The developers are a group called Broadside Holdings

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