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East Midlands Chamber News

Community views sought for Whetstone Pastures ‘garden village’ vision as public consultation begins

The 931-acre site at Whetstone Pastures that is set to become a 'garden village'

Members of the public can give their views on a draft proposal for a new “garden village” in south Leicestershire.

Tritax Symmetry, the developer of Whetstone Pastures, has begun a public consultation today (7 December) on its vision for the 931-acre site.

The company said it wanted to create a “sustainable new community” that will include thousands of new homes, as well as schools, healthcare and community facilities, a logistics park and other employment sites.

Sinead Turnbull, planning director at Tritax Symmetry, said: “Whetstone Pastures is an opportunity to deliver significant and lasting benefits to the district and we are excited to work in collaboration with the local community and stakeholders to shape our collective ideas.”

What is a garden village?

The initiative follows Whetstone Pastures being awarded garden village status by the Government as part of its Garden Communities programme.

Garden villages are designed to be distinct, self-contained communities of between 1,500 and 10,00 homes, and include their own facilities such as shops, schools and transport links. They will also include green spaces.

These are smaller than garden towns and garden cities, but will play a key role in delivering Government-set targets to deliver land for housing while protecting existing towns and villages from unwanted development.

Whetstone Pastures currently has no status within Blaby District Council’s emerging Local Plan, but the project will benefit from a share of a £3m Government pot to be distributed across 19 authorities.

Whetstone Pastures garden village public consultation

The site is located either side of the M1, six miles south of Leicester and next to the village of Countesthorpe.

It has the potential to accommodate somewhere between 3,500 and 6,000 new homes, a logistics park spanning four million sq ft of employment floorspace, motorway services area, shops, employment opportunities, schools and facilities for leisure, healthcare and community.

Tritax Symmetry’s draft vision is made up of seven core themes, including creating a unique place; community; health; natural environment; sustainable movement; economy; and climate mitigation.

Its engagement programme, which runs until 24 January, will gather feedback on the proposals.

This will be considered by the design team and incorporated into a final vision document that will be the shared blueprint for Whetstone Pastures between the project partners and local community.

Sinead added: “The proposed vision is set out on the new website and a series of public engagement activities will be held between now and February 2021. The aim is to stimulate discussion, generate feedback and draw upon the knowledge, creativity and skills of existing communities in South Leicestershire to ensure we collectively create the best possible vision for Whetstone Pastures.

“Everyone will have the opportunity to get involved through the project website, online webinars, online surveys, social media channels, community newsletters, project e-mail, telephone and Freepost address.

“We aim to have as many more in-person public events as soon as possible in order to reach as many people as we can including community and design led events, citizens panels and public exhibitions as we move through each stage.

“Hopefully, as many people as possible will get involved and share their thoughts and ideas for creating a new community of which we and future generations can be proud.”

To give feedback, visit www.whetstonepastures.co.uk or email contact@whetstonepastures.co.uk.