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Shaping Offshore Wind Leasing Round 4

Round 4 engagement journey

Engagement with stakeholders and industry was critical in shaping Offshore Wind Leasing Round 4.

As managers of the seabed around England, Wales and Northern Ireland, The Crown Estate plays a unique and active role in developing and helping sustain UK energy supply and infrastructure, working together with industry, government, regulators and our many stakeholders to help deliver growth in a manner that balances the wide range of interests in the marine environment.

In line with Government and industry appetite for additional offshore wind capacity, and following the significant cost reduction demonstrated by the sector, we announced our intention to make new seabed area available for offshore wind leasing in November 2017.

Following the announcement, we carried out an extensive 18-month programme of pre-tender engagement process. Through this, we refined our proposals in line with feedback and comments, helping us take account of seabed users, potential environmental impacts and market needs.

We presented our final tender design in Spring/Summer 2019, and in September 2019, we the announcement of the final Bidding Areas and launched Offshore Wind Leasing Round 4.

October 2019

Bidders Information Day

On 9 October 2019, we hosted a ‘Bidders Information Day’ for potential participants in Offshore Wind Leasing Round 4 and their advisors. Participants were provided with more detail about the tender process, as well as providing the opportunity to put questions to The Crown Estate team. 

Slides and a recording of the presentations, as well as a summary of the Q&A, are available below.

Spring/Summer 2019

  • Market Information Event Recording - Session 1

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  • Market Information Event Recording - Session 2

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During Spring/Summer 2019, we are continuing our work to refine proposals for Round 4, reflecting the feedback received from our November engagement with market and stakeholders.

As this work progresses, we will continue to provide updates on this section of our website, ensuring our latest proposals are available to market, stakeholders and interested organisations.

Stakeholder update (26th July)

We have produced an update document to provide stakeholders a summary of the ongoing work we are carrying out to conclude the final design, form and scale of Offshore Wind Leasing Round 4, ahead of the process launching later this year.

This follows the 18 July Market Information Event where we provided an update to the market on the proposed tender design of Round 4. More information about this event and the materials presented are available above.

Market Information Event (18th July)

On 18 July, we presented the outcome of our tender design work for Offshore Wind Leasing Round 4 to the offshore wind market.

The tender process for Round 4 has been developed to deliver a fair, balanced and competitive tender, which balances a broad range of interests.

In the ‘Materials’ pane you can find a copy of the slides presented at the event, a summary of the Q&A, as well as links to the recording of the presentations.

The recording is divided into two sessions. Time markers are listed in the description of the videos which can be used to skip to each chapter.

Session 1 covers the following chapters:

  • Introduction (Will Apps) 

  • Overview of process to date (Jonny Boston) 

  • Leasing process design (Jonny Boston) 

  • Overview of ITT Stage 2 (Ben Barton) 

Session 2 covers the following chapters:

  • ITT Stage 1 & technical design changes (Helen Elphick) 

  • Additional commercial design changes (Ben Barton) 

  • Summary, timeline & next steps (Jonny Boston) 

Stakeholders Update Webinar (9th May)

On 9 May, we provided an update to stakeholders on how their feedback has influenced our work, and our next steps and timeline.

The slides for this presentation and a summary of the Q&A are available for download.  Market Feedback Webinar (29th April)On 29 April, we presented a market update, via a webinar, on our plans for new offshore wind leasing, summarising the feedback we have received from developers since our November engagement events and confirming how this will be taken forward in our updated tender design.

The presentation shared a series of refinements and clarifications on our draft proposals for Round 4, reflecting the comments received.

The webinar and slides are available here. The agenda of the recording is as follows:

  • 00:00 Welcome

  • 04:07 Context and objectives

  • 07:16 November 2018 engagement and common themes from your feedback

  • 14:19 Our updated proposals

  • 15:46 Our updated proposals: Who can bid?

  • 20:50 Our updated proposals: PQQ criteria

  • 28:08 Our updated proposals: Approach to ITT

  • 32:12 Our updated proposals: Approach to Tender parameters

  • 42:16 Our updated proposals: Approach to AfL and Lease terms

  • 44:52 Timeline, other leasing activities and next steps

  • 50:20 Q&A

November 2018

  • Presentation - New Leasing update to stakeholders (November 2018)

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In November 2018, The Crown Estate launched its second phase of engagement with stakeholders and the market, sharing its updated proposals for Round 4 offshore wind leasing.

The Crown Estate’s November update included two key events: the first with stakeholders on the 15 November; and the second with the market on the 26. The latest proposals follow extensive engagement with market and statutory stakeholders since July.

An overview of the information provided at each session are provided on this page, along with the presentation slides and a summary of Q&A.

Update following stakeholder engagement event (15th November):

On 15 November, The Crown Estate shared further detail on plans for Round 4 with stakeholders, including its proposed refinement of seabed regions - within which developers would have the opportunity to identify and propose sites.

This work, underpinned by a detailed assessment of spatial constraints and developed in collaboration with statutory stakeholders, identifies:

  • Five regions that The Crown Estate proposes to include in plans for a new leasing round

    , on the basis that they are technically feasible, include sufficiently large areas of available seabed for offshore wind development and have lower levels of development constraint.

  • Four regions which The Crown Estate proposes to take forward for further consideration

    , on the basis that additional work is required to build the evidence base and engage with technical stakeholders about these areas, in order to better understand the seabed resource and constraints and confirm their inclusion.

  • Nine regions that will not be taken forward as part of Round 4

    , on the basis that they are impacted by significant development constraints, which would be challenging to mitigate, namely: defence ranges and exercise areas; visual sensitivity (i.e. where development would predominately or entirely be within 13km of shore) and overlap with shipping routes that contain traffic of more than 1,000 ships per year.

The full presentation and a summary of the Q&A related to the presentation are available in the Materials pane.

We have also made the following documents available on the Marine Data Exchange, which set out the analysis that underpins the regions refinement work outlined above, as well as a summary of stakeholder feedback.  

  • Resource and Constraints Assessment for Offshore Wind

    • Methodology Report

    • Characterisation Area Reports

    • Characterisation Areas GIS shape files

    • Model Output 

      GIS shape file

  • Interim Summary Stakeholder Feedback Report

  • Interim Regions Refinement Report and Refined Regions


    GIS shape files

  • National Grid: Offshore Wind Constraints Study

Additional datasets used in the analysis process are available for viewing on our GIS portal.

Update following market engagement event (26th November):

On 26 November, The Crown Estate shared new details with the market on the proposed tender design for its planned Round 4 offshore wind leasing.

This included the criteria it would propose to assess at the ‘Pre-Qualification’ stage (PQQ) and ‘Invitation to Tender (ITT) stages of Round 4. The Crown Estate also shared further detail on additional tender parameters, such as: bidding entities and consortia arrangements, spatial aspects and an outline of the proposed agreement for lease.

In the Materials pane, you can find the presentation in full and by section ('Policy & Portfolio Context', 'Feedback & Region Refinement' and 'Tender Process Design'), as well as a summary of the Q&A and a glossary related to the presentation, all available for download.

We’ve also made available a recorded session where our Offshore Wind team explains the key elements of the proposed Tender Process Design. The agenda of the recording is as follows, click here to listen.

  • 00:00 Welcome

  • 03:11 Tender process design: Strategic approach

  • 08:52 Tender process design: Applicant and Financial PPQ criteria

  • 16:10 Tender process design: Technical PPQ criteria, ITT and Tender parameters

  • 35:05 Agreements for lease, related documents & key terms

  • 41:04 Summary

If you are a potential market participant unable to attend the event and are not on our mailing list, and/or you would like further information, please contact us at

July 2018

  • Presentation - potential new leasing market engagement event

    Download (3489KB)

In July 2018, The Crown Estate presented to industry and statutory stakeholders, to provide an overview of its work-to-date to design a potential new leasing round for offshore wind.

The presentation, available on the right, outlines The Crown Estate’s work over recent months to consider the potential scale, location and nature of any new seabed rights in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

The slides provide an overview of:

  • The Crown Estate’s role and remit offshore

  • The UK regulatory setting for offshore wind

  • The existing UK portfolio.

  • Other considerations, including statutory obligations and other ongoing leasing processes

  • Our proposed approach to tender design, building on lessons learned from previous leasing rounds, and subject to feedback from market and stakeholders.

  • Next steps and timescales

A summary of the Q&A related to the presentation is also available on the right.

If you are a potential market participant and were unable to attend these events, and/or you would like further information, please contact us at

February 2018