Proposals for a Suitable Alternative Natural Greenspace (SANG) at Hicks Farm, Throop have been submitted to BCP Council’s Planning team following public consultations that took place in September 2019.
The sessions – which were well attended at Holdenhurst and Muscliff – gave residents the opportunity to view the council’s draft plans for the SANG and provide feedback to help inform the planning application.
Alongside the public consultations, a series of baseline and technical studies were undertaken to help create more detailed plans to shape and inform the planning application. These studies included transport statement (including automatic traffic counts), tree survey and impact assessment, flood risk assessment, heritage statement and ecology assessment.
Proposals for Hicks Farm, which had previously been used primarily for private grazing, include a change of use to an attractive natural c.12 hectares of greenspace, creating a network of new pedestrian and cycle paths, access close to a stretch of the River Stour, new tree planting and the reinstatement of hedgerows to improve wildlife habitats – all of which reinforce BCP Council’s commitment to the environment and sustainable travel.
The proposed SANG will offset the impact that new developments in the town centre, including the Winter Gardens Development, have on protected heathland habitats. SANG’s have been designed to provide an attractive environment to encourage passive recreational uses including walking, cycling and dog walking.
The Hicks Farm SANG is to be funded from financial contributions collected from local developments. If the planning application is approved in early 2020, BCP Council would be working to get the site open by early 2021.
The planning application can be viewed on the Planning Portal.
For more information, please visit the Hicks Farm page.