Design masterplan for Welborne is approved

An artist's impression of Welborne
An artist's impression of Welborne
Leading WEM Phil Phillips, from Fareham, waves to his wife, Lynne, in the crowd as HMS Liverpool returns home after seven months on duty

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A GARDEN town for the 21st century is the vision set out for Welborne in a new influential plan.

Councillors last night agreed to move forward the design masterplan for the 6,000-home development.

A six-week public consultation will take place later this month and into July where members of the public will be urged to have their say.

The plan provides detailed guidance on how Welborne should be developed.

Once approved, it will be referred to as a benchmark for quality and standards when any developer submits a planning application for Welborne.

Among the themes are ‘green infrastructure corridors’ – meaning that every resident will be a two to three-minute walk from a green space.

Landscape buffers are proposed to maintain gaps between new developments and existing settlements.

The masterplan includes a map showing land for residential areas, community hubs, employment land and schools.

The report emphasises providing a ‘green and spacious feeling to streets and spaces’ and a layout that provides ‘generous space’ for pedestrians and cyclists.

Councillor Keith Evans, who heads planning and environment for Fareham Borough Council, told the executive board: ‘This decision will help applicants produce successful planning applications.’

He said the masterplan was not a rigid checklist, however, and said there was flexibility within it.

‘It’s important when you consider this is a development area that’s going to be 20 to 25 years,’ he said.

He said it would allow the council’s planning committee to ‘gauge the quality and nature’ of the design of developments.

Cllr Connie Hockley added: ‘Once it’s all finalised and agreed, the planning committee will find it extremely useful.’

Council leader Sean Woodward said: ‘It shows the quality we are expecting to see out of these developers on the site and what we expect to be built in.’

The design plan outlines that the development should consider ways of reducing carbon emissions and mitigating against flooding.

The overall plan for Welborne will be scrutinised by an independent planning inspector in the autumn.