The Vision for Chilmington Green Community Planning Weekend was held on 24th and 25th September, where the consortium promoting the new development at Chilmington Green in Ashford – Pentland Homes, Barratt Homes, Hodson Developments Ltd and Jarvis Homes – invited Ashford’s local community to discuss their thoughts and ideas with master planners, JTP.
Ashford Borough Council’s adopted Core Strategy identifies Chilmington Green as a site for a sustainable urban extension delivering around 3,350 dwellings and 600 jobs by 2021, with potential for over 7,000 dwellings and approximately 1,000 jobs thereafter. A major public park, ‘Discovery Park’, is also proposed. The master planning team, led by JTP, has been employed by the developer consortium, working closely with Ashford Borough Council and Ashford’s Future, to draw up a masterplan for the site.
The aim of the weekend event, held at Singleton Environment Centre, Ashford, was to bring together everyone with an interest in Chilmington Green to produce a shared, practical vision for its future development as a sustainable, urban extension. During the weekend, people had the chance to view and comment on emerging ideas and to participate in workshops and walkabouts to explore local and site specific issues.
Over 120 local people attended the event and expressed their views and ideas on the community facilities they would like to see included, as well as considering matters such as the layout, phasing, and the future management of the development.
Chartered town planner, Ian Bull, who is project managing the Chilmington Green development on behalf of the consortium, commented: “We want to create a master plan that is a credit to Ashford – a thriving community where people desire to live. We are keen to involve the public at this early stage; it’s essential for us that those who already live and work in the area get to have a say in the masterplan so we’re delighted with the turn out and will be taking everyone’s comments on board.”
John Thompson, Chairman of JTP, added: “We want to pull together all of the best thinking about local enterprise, transition towns, productive landscapes, sustainability and localism and deliver them in one place. There's a fantastic opportunity to make this the first great new settlement of the 21st century, and we'd like to tap into all the creative and cultural networks in the local and wider area to help to bring it alive.”
The team from JTP analysed the outcomes from the weekend and created a new Vision for the urban extension which was presented back to the community on Wednesday 20th October at Singleton Environment Centre, Wesley School Road, Singleton in Ashford.
You can view the programme of the weekend, exhibition and report in the downloads section.