Frequently asked questions
The principles of the garden communities date back to the 19th Century Garden City Movement, founded by Ebenezer Howard. The Garden City Movement, sought to deliver development which combined the best of town and country, addressing issues of pollution and overcrowding which were endemic in Victorian Britain.
Today, garden towns are part of a Government programme to enable the development of well-designed, sustainable new communities in order to help address the housing shortage. Tewkesbury Garden Town was identified within the Government’s Garden Communities Programme in March 2019.
Community and sustainability are at the heart of garden town principles, which have been adapted to address current issues such as sustainability and climate change.
The adopted Joint Core Strategy identified a housing shortfall. A review of this plan, now called the Strategic and Local Plan (SLP), is now taking place, and land in the garden town area has been put forward for potential development.
The scale of development may seem quite large, but the garden town concept masterplan illustrates how the area could develop over next 25-30 years. As a concept masterplan, it is only indicative at this stage.
Tewkesbury/Ashchurch was put forward for development in the drafting of the adopted JCS plan and will be considered through the review of this plan, now called the Strategic and Local Plan (SLP), which is currently being undertaken.
The Issues and Options phase within the plan review process will look at all potential development areas, plus any alternatives to help inform the next phase of the plan, this is scheduled for consultation later this year.
Evidence of need is based upon the annual housing requirement for Tewkesbury which, based on government-issued methodology, is approximately 600 homes per annum. Over 20 years this would equate to 12,000 homes.
The need for employment is based on established studies of economic growth. The adopted JCS highlighted a requirement of 192 hectares of new employment land which could support up to 39,000 jobs (dependent upon type of job) up to 2031.
We will not be building homes or new facilities; that is the role of the developers. However, we do have an important role to play in managing growth and development so that it is of a high-quality and supported by sustainable infrastructure.
This will be part of any detailed master planning of development in the area. It will also be considered through the emerging review of the local plan called Strategic and Local Plan (SLP). At this early stage of the garden town development proposal, such detail is not yet available, but is fully acknowledged as a critical requirement of any development planning process to be fully addressed as the plan evolves.
The M5 Junction 9 and A46 (Ashchurch) Transport Scheme is a proposal to develop a new or reconfigured M5 junction near Tewkesbury and re-route the existing A46 around Ashchurch to Teddington Hands roundabout. A wide variety of route options are currently being considered and technically assessed for suitability.
Gloucestershire County Council are leading on this project. Please visit their website for more information.
There is an on-going project to review and promote improvements to the rail facilities/services in the Ashchurch area. Some improvements, including additional service stops at Ashchurch Station are being discussed with the rail operators and development of the scale associated with the garden town would most certainly help justify this request and the viability of an increased level of services.
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