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Garden Village takes another step closer

12/09/2018

The Garden Village at Handforth has taken a major step forward – passing another key delivery milestone.

Cheshire East Council’s strategic planning board has already approved the consultation draft of the planning framework for the site and yesterday (Tuesday 11 September) the council’s cabinet approved a suite of key practical measures necessary to progress delivery of the village.

These measures include authorising the council’s executive director of place to enter into commercial, infrastructure and delivery agreements with other principal landowners and the successful tender developer. This will be funded from a £23m grant the council has secured from Homes England. 

The proposed scheme is one of the government’s 14 Garden Villages in the UK and locally, strategically and nationally significant.

This new Cheshire village will deliver 1,500 high-quality homes by 2030 in a sustainable, landscape-led development. A total of 47 hectares – more than 40 per cent of the site – will be green open space.

The draft supplementary planning document (SPD) sets the quality and design principles for The Garden Village and, once adopted, will form part of the planning policy that any future planning applications submitted for the site will be judged against. The SPD will ensure that the council’s vision to deliver a high-quality, community-led Garden Village is realised and builds on the Local Plan Strategy and ‘visioning’ document for the site, as well as a suite of technical studies. 

The council has now launched its consultation on the draft SPD, giving local stakeholders, interested parties and the public the opportunity to comment on the framework.

Councillor Ainsley Arnold, cabinet member for housing, planning and regeneration, said: “The Cheshire East Local Plan Strategy establishes the principle of creating a new plan-led settlement east of Handforth, promoting good growth for the region.

“This implementation strategy is one of the first of a number of steps the council will be taking to ensure the Garden Village becomes a reality as a great place to live and work. We therefore welcome as many comments as possible on the draft document.

“The draft SPD sets out the overarching design principles for the ‘Village Heart’ and each of the character areas of the Garden Village.”

Engine of the North will act as lead developer on behalf of the council and will submit a planning application to deliver the Village Heart and infrastructure.

Councillor Jamie Macrae, chairman of Engine of the North, said: “Engine of the North are the custodians of the council’s vision to create a truly sustainable and characterful new village for Cheshire East. This lifetime community will support its inhabitants as their lives grow and evolve, from first-time buyers to families, as well as older people looking to downsize.

“As over 40 per cent of the site will be green open space, amenity space and habitat protection, the Garden Village will not only be a great place to live but also somewhere for new and existing residents to come and enjoy their surroundings for generations to come.”