Technical consultation on street naming

Closed 22 May 2022

Opened 11 Apr 2022


Topic of this consultation:

How streets are named, and how names can be changed forms part of the programme to level up the United Kingdom. Local street names form part of the local identity that helps create a sense of pride in place; how they are changed forms part of the process that can build or reduce trust in local systems and institutions.

The Government are concerned that there are attempts to erase and cancel local heritage and that residents are not being properly consulted. The current system relies upon three Acts of Parliament which date from the early 20th century and create nationally inconsistent and unclear procedures for changing street names. Under the existing legislation, many local authorities have the power to change the name of a given street without engaging residents or businesses on that street.

The Government wishes to explore whether it would be possible to establish in law the democratic right of communities to be engaged and have their views taken into account. This would remove the ability of local authorities in England to impose street name changes upon communities without their consent and instead require the consent of those on the street before a proposed street name change proceeds.

The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities is seeking views on both the principles but also the detailed questions of how to define the electorate (i.e. who should have the right to vote on a street name change), the process for engaging with the electorate, and other issues that might be covered in regulations (and any statutory guidance).