We are preparing a reserved matters planning application for 134 homes at The Woodlands, South Marston, Swindon
We held a public consultation on our first phase of housing, known as Skylark at The Woodlands, which includes 31 affordable homes, from 14th until 30th October, including a public exhibition at South Marston Village Hall on Friday 14th October. You can downland the boards here.
Following consideration and detailed review of feedback, we will submit a Reserved Matters planning application to Swindon Borough Council.
The wider site is primarily in agricultural use, providing an opportunity to increase biodiversity by including a range of wildlife habitats in the landscape design. The site benefits from outline planning permission which has established the principle of the development.
Our first phase of housing will sit across Old Vicarage Lane, with road access either side. An existing drainage channel sits to the north east of the site, and a new play area and allotments will be to the south east.
The section of this phase to the west of Old Vicarage Lane is bordered by an existing bridleway along the northern boundary, which sits between the new homes and existing properties in Magdalene Close. New homes will be sufficiently far away from existing properties to ensure the privacy of neighbouring residents.
Our proposals for Skylark are led by the Design Code for The Woodlands, which is in its final stages of production and agreement with Swindon Borough Council. The Design Code includes a number of character areas which specify elements such as materials, housing typology and landscaping.
Skylark will include the below character areas.
Old Vicarage Lane
In keeping with buildings along Old Vicarage Lane, this area will have a variety of detached and semi-detached dwellings with a selection of different materials and colours.
Primary Street is a principal route through the development. Similar to Thornhill Road and Highworth Road, homes present a variation of material to create a sense of diversity.
Parkland Edge features variation in materials and architectural features inspired by rural farmsteads, with a range of material choices.
Two tones of red multi brick partnered with red tile hanging and dark grey eternit cladding as secondary materials, provide a rural frontage to the bridleway.
The Core character area will be designed to be more intimate with buildings of a simple design. Buildings will generally be short terraces or semi-detached and may include the occasional detached house.
The homes will be designed in accordance with the Design Code for The Woodlands. This document sets out a number of key principles which aim to create a development that is beautiful, sustainable and biodiverse, whilst reflecting its surroundings and local architecture.
This phase includes five distinct character areas, taken from the Design Code, to provide variety and interest. These are Old Vicarage Lane, Primary Street, Parkland Edge, Bridleway Frontage and Core Area.
The character areas will create a subtle variety in housing design and material use that reflects homes in the surrounding area. The use of detailing and feature detail is a common theme in the area and will be carried through in the overall design of the buildings.
Homes will primarily be two-storey, with an emphasis on detached and semi-detached properties.
The Woodlands will include a range of new facilities delivered by the consortium members, meaning that new residents will be able to access many day-to-day essentials by foot and bike.
This includes a new two-form entry primary school, two community buildings, a neighbourhood centre with mixed use retail and employment space, sports pitches and a pavilion, allotments in three locations, green space and 10 play areas.
We will put in place a Travel Plan, with a dedicated co-ordinator, to promote sustainable transport measures and educate residents on their benefits.
There will be a network of footpath and cycleway routes integrated throughout the development, including the retention of Public Rights of Way. Some of these routes were identified in the South Marston Neighbourhood Plan.
For those who need to travel further afield, we will design bus-friendly routes through the development.
Road access to the wider development will be at three points: the Thornhill Road roundabout, Old Vicarage Lane and the A420. We will make improvements to these junctions, and no vehicular traffic will use Nightingale Lane nor Rowborough Lane.
The Design Code for The Woodlands focuses heavily on the natural environment, and includes an aim to foster wildlife and increase biodiversity by creating new habitats and managing flood risk.
The planting for the development follows the guidelines laid out in the Design Code and the landscape includes numerous trees to give a green character to the streets within the development.
The tree species chosen are taken from the palette included in the Design Code.
The existing hedgerows are a defining feature of Old Vicarage Lane, and these will be retained and enhanced with wildflower planting along the base of the hedgerows.
Grass verges within the development will be sown with a species-rich seed mixture to enhance biodiversity
Ornamental planting to front gardens has been carefully selected to provide robust and colourful year-round interest and to attract bees and other insects. Bird boxes will be installed on homes on a 1:1 ratio.
New community facilities will form the heart of The Woodlands development, helping to create a neighbourhood where people can live, work and relax in one place.
A new two-form entry primary school will enable younger children to get their education close to home, and a neighbourhood centre will provide a focal point where people can shop and meet. Two new community buildings will act as hubs for clubs, societies and voluntary organisations, as well as being available to hire for functions and events.
Green spaces and play areas are dotted throughout the site, offering the chance to exercise, play and rest. Sports pitches and a new pavilion will enable residents to stay fit and healthy whilst watching friends and neighbours show off their skills.
Three new allotment sites will provide space for green fingered residents to grow their own fruit and vegetables.
It’s also important to support the wider area, and the consortium, including Taylor Wimpey, will be making contributions totalling over £43m to infrastructure and facilities in and around South Marston.
This includes over £22.5m towards highway improvements, £2.8m to help expand South Marston Church of England Primary School, £576,000 for the creation of a new forest within the development, around £1.3m towards local healthcare and £255,000 towards local library services.
A proportion of affordable housing will be built for shared ownership or rent. In our first phase, this will include 31 properties.
As well as this, Taylor Wimpey will work to support local schools, community organisations and charities throughout the construction and sales phase of the development.
Upcoming Consultation activity
We held a public consultation on the first phase of 134 new homes, to be known as Skylark at The Woodlands, from 3pm to 7pm on Friday 14th October at South Marston Village Hall. The first phase will include 31 affordable homes.
Following consideration and detailed review of the feedback that we receive, we will submit a Reserved Matters planning application to Swindon Borough Council. At that time the council will write to neighbours again, giving details of the application and an opportunity for you to make any further comments.
All homes will be highly insulated with low-energy lighting and a selection of low-use water fittings. Building materials will be carefully selected and procured in order to reduce their lifecycle impact, including using timber from certified sustainable sources only.
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