A gateway review of the garden town was undertaken this year after concerns were raised by councillors around the programme’s delivery.
A gateway review process is considered best practice, and gives independent guidance to Senior Responsible Owners (the Chief Executive) and the organisation (the council) on how best to ensure that their programmes and projects are successful.
Importantly, the review found no fundamental concerns with the aims or the principles of the garden town itself, but it did made hard-hitting recommendations to enhance the programme’s delivery, particularly regarding community engagement and collaboration with partners and developers.
At its meeting on 26 September, Council agreed to develop a new programme of delivery for the garden town, based on the review’s 17 recommendations.
Since then, the new team overseeing the new approach has:
- Introduced a new robust programme management system.
- Established a programme of engagement sessions with local parish councils, community groups, businesses, and partners, with work also starting on an engagement strategy for the longer term.
- Developed a new governance structure, which sees stakeholders playing a key role in the programme’s delivery.
An emerging charter is also being developed to stimulate discussion on the expectations for the delivery of the Garden Town, and information gathered at the stakeholder sessions will feed into this charter. Structured around the existing nine Garden Town principles, it will offer some broad concepts to help inspire ideas and discussions. Once the charter has been developed, it will set the council’s and communities’ expectations as to what developers will need to deliver to ensure the principles of the Garden Town programme are met.
As part of our commitment to meaningful engagement, the team has worked closely with Cratus, engagement specialists, to put establish a programme of stakeholder workshops that will start at the beginning of October.
Stakeholder groups include:
- Local parish councils
- Community groups and schools
- Local businesses
The sessions will explore views on the garden town, and stakeholders will be asked to feed into an emerging ‘charter’ document that will directly shape the delivery of the new garden town.
If you would like to be added to one of the stakeholder groups, please use the contact us form.