Weekly digest: Mar 2

Hello

An even shorter and very much rushed edition this week, folks, as I remain buried pretty deep in writing the Plan.  So, apologies if you are feeling a little short-changed and for the typos in last week’s missive. I’ll aim to do better this time….

1. Chetwynd Barracks sale delayed

  • You may have seen this Nottingham Post article reporting the news that the sale of the Barracks has now been deferred to 2024.
  • Richard met with Anna Soubry for a coffee Friday morning to discuss the announcement and the impact on our plans in the Forum. She has sent this letter to the MoD outlining her concerns and requesting a meeting.
  • We share her concerns:  it is very disappointing the sale has been delayed as we have put in a great deal of time in gathering and documenting views on how the site should be developed. Whilst this work isn’t wasted (we continue to plough ahead with our Plan) it is frustrating that the exciting visions we are developing for the whole area will take longer to deliver
  • The revised plans are: “On current plans, Chilwell Station will begin a phased land disposal in 2021 and units will remain in place until 2024”. The big concern we have with a phased exit is that the release of land on the western side of the site (behind Stapleford Lane) will probably take place in 2021 to allow 500 homes to be built as per the Local Plan Part 2.
  • However this ‘piecemeal’ approach in releasing land to developers will quite likely compromise the overall vision we are putting together for the whole site.
  • Hence, we are keen to join Anna Soubry in her meeting with the MoD to clarify their intentions and make sure they know our concerns. More on this as things unfold.

2. Draft reports: Design Codes & Policy Definition

  • Long-time readers of the digest will recall that we commissioned two reports from AECOM last autumn: one relating to housing design codes and the other about writing water-tight policies that meet ‘professional’ standards
  • We have now received these 2 reports as drafts, and we are reviewing and feeding back our suggestions. At first glance (actually after a 2nd and 3rd glance as well), these reports look to be little gold mines! The design codes are impressive and imaginative whilst the suggested constructions for policy definitions are very helpful
  • These reports will feed into our Plan, so the timing of delivery is spot on, making our task a lot easier.

3. Stakeholder meetings past and future

  • Richard has attended a couple of meetings over the last couple of weeks:
    • Midlands Connect is a regional organisation tasked with looking at transport infrastructure for the Midlands. They have been commissioned by local authorities to produce a transport strategy arising from the advent of HS2, so their main focus is centered around the Hub Station. We were invited (along with other stakeholders: Trowell Parish Council and Ashfield, Gedling and Mansfield councils) to a viewing of their initial thoughts and asked for comments. They intend to produce and publish their final version in June
    • HS2 Strategy Board. As you know we have been a member of the board for a couple of years.  The main output of this meeting was that we have been invited to join the Skills and Supply Chain delivery board. This will prove useful as we will be able to share our views on the sorts of jobs we’d like to see at the Innovation campus.  As well that, we want to be able to publicise opportunities for local business to get involved in the hub station – both during and after construction.
  • Richard and Ian (chair of the CIC) have a meeting with Kay Cutts, leader of Notts County Council and chair of the Toton Delivery Board next week to impress on her our view that the Forum should be a member of this Board. As you know we are part of the Strategic Planning Group, which feeds work/paper into the Board but.. we believe we need to be a full member at the ‘top table’ to ensure our views are properly taken into account. More on this next time

4. And finally….

  • Nothing more to report really. A quick mention of the Lotto scheme that we are part of.  We thank all supporters who take part and have nominated the Forum as a ‘good cause’. It provides us with a steady stream of income which helps cover admin costs such as room hires.  Attached below is a flyer from the scheme. If you are not yet a supporter and would like to join in, please see the details which explain how to assign a portion of your ticket price to us as a ‘good cause’.

We are now in the finishing straight in producing the Plan. We agreed to get the Plan produced in Q1 2019 so are on track. However, to make sure we stay in front, we (okay, I really mean ‘I’) need to maintain focus. Which is a long-winded way of saying the digest will take a short break for the next 2 weeks to make sure we pass the finishing post before the end of the month. I trust you will understand. See you in 3 weeks!

Kind regards
Graham

Broxtowe Lotto: tickets available from our CTTC Forum page where you’ll also find details of the scheme.

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2 Responses to Weekly digest: Mar 2

  1. Simon says:

    As usual I read your updates. Well done by the way – a labour of love!

    I’d heard about the possible 3 year delay in the Barracks – but am more alarmed by the possibility that various plots will be sold piecemeal. Something I’m really against as the big developers will cherry pick, put in planning applications which BBC are bound to consider/grant under the many rules. This risks the entire project being one led by profit, and not controlled as a ‘garden village’ project. We could lose so much by way of the larger considerations which the forum have fought to protect or impose.

    I would hope BBC can block all such applications somehow.

    Obviously I hope I’m wrong!

    Simon

    • Mark T says:

      Hi Simon
      Many thanks for taking the time to respond. And, yes, we share your concerns about the potential for piecemeal sales of the Barracks by the DIO. We know they have ‘history’ in carving up sales like this and the resulting development pleases no one – apart from the developers who, as you note, cherry pick the best sites and seek to maximise their profits by ignoring ‘big picture’ infrastructure constraints.

      So, we intend to be very watchful. One thing on our side is that the Council do support our view that an overarching strategic masterplan is needed for the whole area. And that the Forum must be part of the process in developing the masterplan. So, we shall be holding the Council to account and honour this commitment.

      Kind regards
      Graham

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