Bath and North East Somerset Council has announced proposals for a charging clean air zone (CAZ) across the city.

The council has chosen a category D CAZ, which will require all vehicles including cars, to meet the minimum Euro-4 petrol or Euro-6 diesel emissions standards.

Proposed charges are £100 per day for HGVs, buses and coaches to enter the designated city centre zone, and £9 per day for cars, vans and taxis.

In addition to the usual national CAZ exemptions such as military vehicles and those with a historical vehicle tax class, the council is also exploring a range of local concessions. Under consideration is the proposal to delay the introduction of charges until 1 January 2025 for the following vehicles:

  • Emergency service vehicles
  • Recovery vehicles or breakdown trucks over 3,500kg
  • Vehicles in the special vehicles tax class
  • Vehicles in the special types tax class
  • Vehicles in the general haulage vehicle tax class

The council is also exploring a range of support measures for local businesses, which include a post 2021 project to retrofit Euro-4 and Euro-5 HGVs.

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Councillor Mark Shelford, cabinet member for transport and environment, said: “As well as the proposed class D Clean Air Zone, we’re looking at a package of measures such as concessions for vulnerable groups, financial support schemes for residents and businesses that need it most, public transport improvements and extending the operating hours of the park and ride.

"Right now we want to talk to people and listen to their views ahead of a decision on a final proposal in December," he added.

The public consultation will run until 26 November. The council is inviting everyone to read a summary of the proposal and take part in its questionnaire.


The RHA has warned that the Bath CAZ will be a “disaster for hauliers”.

It is concerned that the proposed route takes in a section of the A36, a primary freight route for the city that effectively bypasses the city.

Chief executive Richard Burnett said: “The A36 is a significant route connecting Somerset with other parts of the country, but the £100 charges will see lorries displaced along local roads less suited to freight traffic.

He added: “It’s clear that the local authority has no understanding about how the supply chain works. You can’t just make it prohibitive for lorries to use a major route and hope there won’t be consequences.”

RHA warned that operators of pre-Euro-6 trucks avoiding the charges will incur extra miles and hours they can’t absorb.

Chris Yarsley, FTA policy manager - South West England, said while improving air quality remains a key priority for the government, the rollout of the Bath CAZ would leave operators little time to upgrade their fleets.

This would be hardest felt by SMEs and van operators, with the latter only having four years' worth of compliant vans on the market by the start of the CAZ, he added. “Any small business that relies on second-hand vehicles to operate in or through Bath may be priced out of business by the daily charge."

Yarsley said: "FTA is calling for a consistent approach to registration and charging across the country for all clean air zones, perhaps with a single charging process and zone nationwide to ensure the smooth adoption and upkeep of these schemes. 

"Any zone which restricts opportunities for trade should be discouraged, and FTA is keen to work with Bath city council to identify ways in which the necessary air quality improvements can be made without directly penalising the businesses responsible for keeping the city trading.”

  • The impact of air quality legislation on the freight and logistics sector will be a key topic at next month's Freight in the City Expo on 6 November in London. Why not book your free place today!