Plan to build on seven-acre grassland site next to ancient woodland in Milton Keynes

A 7.19-acre grassland site next to the ancient Shenley Wood, in Milton Keynes, has been earmarked for development.

Tuesday, 21st January 2020, 4:55 pm

A top councillor is next week being invited to press the launch button on a six-week consultation on mixed business and “residential institution” use of the slab of land called Shenley Wood Site A.

The land is earmarked in the Milton Keynes planning bible, Plan:MK, for uses that may include business, industrial, and storage or distribution.

Milton Keynes Council has “age-restricted” residential use at the top of its wanted list.

The proposed development site, with Shenley Wood on the left

Shenley Wood Retirement Village, with 300 one and two-bed apartments, lies to the north, and the document proposes similar “age-restricted use” for the closest part of the site.

A buffer would be made between that and the business uses that could be built at the south of the site.

The land, bordering Chalkdell Drive and Foxcovert Road, is owned by Milton Keynes Development Partnership, which is tasked to make money for the council, which set it up.

Now, what is known as a draft development brief for the site has been drawn up. It will give MKDP something to promote, and developers will get a steer about acceptable uses for the site.

It will also eventually go to the council’s all-powerful cabinet for approval. If granted, it will become an official planning document to help determine future development applications.

Cllr Martin Gowans (Lab, Bletchley East) the council’s elected chief for planning and transport, has been recommended to launch a six-week consultation at a delegated decisions meeting on Tuesday (Jan 28). If he agrees the consultation will start next month.

A report sponsored by Neil Sainsbury, the council’s head of placemaking, says copies of the document will be displayed in Westcroft District Centre, Central Library and Civic Offices, and published on the council’s website.

Councillors will also be sent the documents, and people will be able to make presentations to parish councils.

The decision to consult will be made at MK Council’s offices, off Saxon Gate East, in Central Milton Keynes, at a meeting due to start at 5.30pm on Tuesday, January 28.

It is a meeting open to the public, but people are only allowed to speak or ask questions if they notify the council in advance.