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Guidance for Marine Planning in England

UK CP, England - MSP process


Planning materials and documentation for MSP in England, based on the two regions for which plans have so far been completed: East Inshore and East Offshore South Inshore and South Offshore.


Application in MSP:
Type of Issue:
Type of practice:
Stage of MSP cycle:
Cross-border / trans-national aspect:
Coherence with other processes:
Key words:

Questions this practice may help answer

  • What is the status of marine planning in England and how is it being developed?
  • What is the legislative basis for marine planning in England?
  • What are the roles of key bodies in marine planning in England?
  • What information and guidance is available to support marine planning in England?

Implementation Context

The Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009 established the legal basis for marine planning in England. Marine plans put into practice the objectives for the marine environment that are identified in the UK Marine Policy Statement (MPS) alongside the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) and the Localism Act 2011.

The Marine Management Organisation (MMO) is developing MSP to fulfil these requirements. To support its functions and the provide guidance to stakeholders on the process, the MMO undertook a number of research and analysis projects. These are reported here and provide guidance for MSP in England.


Aspects / Objectives


  • Outline the remit of the MMO in marine planning
  • Set out the process of marine planning in England
  • Provide links to resources and reports to support marine planning in England



The MMO has collated information on marine planning and presented it on a web-page, including access to other statutory guidance, research reports, and the Marine Information System (MIS).

Main Outputs / Results

A web-page with information and links to reports is online at:

It includes the following reports:


·       East Inshore and East Offshore marine plan areas

·       South Inshore and South Offshore marine plan areas

·       Marine Information System (MIS)

·       Clarification of the role of the MMO in the Delegation of functions relating to marine plans

·       Marine planning factsheets

·       Marine planning and development

·       UK marine policy statement

·       The marine planning system for England

·       Marine planning: Strategic Scoping Report

·       Marine planning: socio-economic study



The information is set out specifically for those involved with marine planning in England. However, the steps taken and approach marine planning and specific supporting exercises would be of interest to other member states.

Responsible Entity

Marine Management Organisation (MMO)

Costs / Funding Source

Marine Management Organisation (MMO)

Contact Person

Marine Management Organisation

Lancaster House

Hampshire Court

Newcastle upon Tyne


Tel: 0300 123 1032

Email: (planning[at]marinemanagement[dot]org[dot]uk)