Woodford plans draw crowds to consultation

More than 1,000 people visited public exhibitions run by Stockport and Cheshire East Councils showing plans for the residential development on the former BAE Systems Woodford Aerodrome site.

The councils have been working with Avro Heritage and joint venture partner Harrow Estates, part of Redrow Group, on the residential scheme. The events, held on Friday 25 and Saturday 26 May, showcased the proposed masterplan.

Stockport said the proposed Woodford Garden Village will adopt so-called 'Garden Suburb' principles.

Redrow and Avro plan 950 homes, including both full market and affordable homes.

Proposals include a new primary school, children's play area, new heritage centre, new village green and making the most of green space with generous useable open spaces that will be integrated with the existing Woodford Village. Public transport would also be improved, as well as opening up public rights of way and environmental enhancements to Chester Road.

The next step is for Stockport and Cheshire East Councils to prepare a draft Supplementary Planning Document, which will guide development for the site. Once the SPD has been drafted, people will have further opportunities to have their say during the six-week consultation period later this year.

Cllr Iain Roberts, executive member for regeneration at Stockport Council, said: "We want to hear the views of local people and these events are an important way of getting feedback on the proposed Woodford Garden Village.

"We are determined to get the best amenities and services for the local community and finding out what people think is a crucial part of this. I would urge people to keep talking to us, and to have their say on the draft SPD which will be published later this year."

Cllr Jamie Macrae, Cheshire East Council Cabinet member with responsibility for prosperity and economic regeneration, added: "I would encourage as many local residents as possible to take the time to get involved and express their views about the Woodford Garden Village.

"It is vitally important that we have as much input from local people as possible as the plans will help shape their communities for years to come. We want to get any proposed scheme right for local people and the wider region – and right first time."

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So a bog standard, sprawling housing estate then. What a waste.

By Ebenezer Howard

my main concern is the massing of 950 units on the site. I hope that they do adopt the garden principles in their design! Although I hope they do not think that by providing a couple of wide main roads with grass verges either side means that the houses and streets either side can be crammed in like other unimaginative housing estates. Please provide houses to last, with gardens!

By poynton resident

There are no actual principles to adhere to because there is no such thing as a "garden village" or a "garden suburb". The terms have been entirely made up and in any case don’t suggest any great aspirations for the site – I can see plenty of garden space in the above image but everything else points towards it being a conventional housing estate with no distinguishing features whatsoever. At 950 units this is not a village or a suburb but an urban extension. As such it needs to be somewhere with a genuine sense of place rather than just more sprawl. It needs a well structured street layout, quality, distinctive and ideally contemporary architecture, retention and re-use of heritage features, high quality and well managed open space, easy access to shops and services and well built, spacious homes. Finally, the site should be more than just housing – what happened to the idea of a racecourse or a film studio, or something that can generate employment?

By E H

Employment use? how about an airport

By Nimrod

I agree with the valid points raised by other contributors here (ha, of which half were apparently Ebenezer himself)!! 950 homes will provide living facilities for a lot of people (roughly between 1200 – 2500 persons) – even if a new primary school is created, where will these children travel to secondary school? Bramhall? Poynton? Hazel Grove? (Are these schools prepared to cope with such increases?) The new and improved public transport networks suggested – these can only really relate to ‘Bus-Stops’ (of which Woodford already has several), if not the final completion of the Airport bypass. Where are the direct links to industry? Where are the immediate employment opportunities? (of which of course we local residents will begrudge sharing with a further 1200 or so people)!! Where is this Garden Village’s identity? Unless real thought is given to economic regeneration, I’m worried a further estate development in the area could jeopardise not only the support of immediate residents, but the value and importance of our greenbelt land, and the local surrounding communities. Merely generating a hive of homes simply cannot provide the all round necessities required by people and families to create a new community, to integrate into it, to share an understanding and identity, and to live alongside each other in peace and harmony!! I’m not sure of the exact ‘Garden Village’ model being utilised here (I have only ever studied E.Howard’s Garden City model) – and until I’m shown how some form of economy can be integrated alongside these near thousand homes, I remain very pessimistic about this project!! #PoorPoynton #PoorWoodford

By Another Poynton Resident (not Ebenezer Howard)

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