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Permission sought for 400 new homes at Waterbrook Park development in Ashford

Detailed plans for a housing development of 400 new homes have been submitted by developers.

The proposed scheme would see a mixture of two, three and four-bedroom properties built in Ashford at the Waterbrook Park site south of the A2070 Bad Munstereifel Road at Sevington.

Artists impression of the proposed Retreat community hub Waterbrook Park in Sevington. Picture: Mulberry Homes
Artists impression of the proposed Retreat community hub Waterbrook Park in Sevington. Picture: Mulberry Homes

In August 2019, Ashford Borough Council (ABC) granted outline planning permission for the development, and now a ‘reserved matters’ application gives more detail of what Mulberry Homes plans for the site.

As well as 10% affordable housing, the estate will also feature a community hub called The Retreat, housing a farm shop, cafe and co-working space for those working from home.

The housing is one part of the wider 140-acre Waterbrook development, which will eventually house retail, a drive-thru KFC restaurant, a giant warehouse linked to online retailer Amazon and an expanded Ashford International Truckstop.

A planning statement submitted with the reserved matter application states: "The applicant is confident that the new environments to be created are of such a quality that people will aspire to live in the proposed development, which enables people to live and work in a sustainable, happy and healthy way."

The site will incorporate 22 two-bed and 18 three-bed affordable shared-equity homes, which will be in the same design as the market-rate houses.

The Waterbrook Park site off the A2070
The Waterbrook Park site off the A2070

Part of the site will be wetland, allowing the project to achieve 'nutrient neutrality' and not have any detrimental impact on the Stodmarsh nature reserve near Canterbury.

The discovery of high levels of nitrogen and phosphorous pollution caused by waste water entering the reserve’s lakes, which are fed by the River Stour, had put a number of large housing developments in east Kent on hold.

"The ability to demonstrate nutrient neutrality on any given site is very much dependent upon the site characteristics, with few sites having the ability to deliver an on-site solution," the planning statement reads.

"Fortunately, the application site is located adjacent to the East Stour, which enables a wetland to be constructed in the southern part of the site."

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