Welcome to our information web site for our new development at Ashingdon Road, Rochford. Here you will find regular newsletter updates on key dates and events, including archaeology, highways, site works and progress for the different stages of the development.
We have also published a list of Frequently Asked Questions and an enquiry form for you to contact us if you have any questions not covered by the FAQs.
You can find out about the range of new 2, 3 and 4 bedrooms homes at the new development and how to purchase a new home by visiting our main web page here: https://bloorhomes.com/developments/essex/rochford/kings-hill-park-rochford
We have received a considerable number of enquiries about the shared ownership properties at Kings Hill Park. We have not yet appointed a shared ownership provider for this development and are currently in discussions. In the meantime, please direct your enquiries here and we will be happy to keep you informed once there are further updates.
The site is being developed following approval of planning application 20/00363/OUT via an appeal decided in March 2022. The land, referenced SER8, was allocated for residential development in the adopted Rochford District Local Development Framework Allocations Document 2014. This means that all the relevant scrutiny has been carried out to ascertain suitability of the site for residential development with appropriate open space amongst other provisions.
The development involves the demolition of two dwellings on Ashingdon Road (Nos. 148 and 150); the removal of a highway tree; formation of an access off Ashingdon Road and a secondary access off Rochford Garden Way/Percy Cottis Road; and the construction of 662 residential dwellings. The access, appearance, scale, landscaping and layout were considered at the outline stage for Phase 1 of the scheme. So far, only the access and layout have been considered for Phases 2 and 3, the appearance, landscaping and scale for these phases will be matters reserved for future applications.
Rochford District Council, as the local planning authority, refused the application at its Development Committee on 24 June 2021 due to concerns about to the impact of additional traffic on the highway network. As the applicant, Bloor Homes appealed this decision. The Planning Inspectorate held a 6-day public inquiry in January/February 2022. In March 2022 the appeal was allowed.
Following the discharge/approval of all pre-commencement conditions, Bloor Homes and our contractors will be able to start development of the approved scheme. Bloor Homes will adhere to the terms of the Construction Environmental Management Plan (CEMP) approved on application 22/00547/DOC. This sets out construction traffic access routes, details of complainant procedures, health and safety measures within the site, wheel washing and dust management, amongst other things.
As with any construction project, unfortunately, there is likely to be a period of disruption for residents. However, Bloor Homes and our contractors will be working to a detailed Construction and Environmental Management Plan (CEMP) during the construction phase.
The approved CEMP sets out measures that will be taken to mitigate the impacts of development, such as limited hours of construction, dust management and wheel washing, controlled delivery times and also provides contact details for points of contact.
A Construction Traffic Management Plan prepared by RSK & TPS for the haulage routes and construction access points were approved by Rochford District Council as from Ashingdon Road and Rochford Garden Way, under condition 45.
Bloor Homes has secured the site and put security fencing along the boundary.
The minor works to Percy Cottis Road have been completed.
The demolition of the bungalows and the creation of the site access on Ashingdon Road has commenced.
On site infrastructure is due to commence in January 2023.
Service diversions along Ashingdon Road are due to start in January 2023.
Tree on Ashingdon Road is due to be felled on 13th February 2023.
Works to the main junction on Ashingdon Road are set to start around May 2023.
Part of the planning consent for the development involves the removal of a large Oak tree outside Holt Farm School. Bloor Homes has paid compensation of £67,560 for the loss of the tree and a further payment of over £74,000 to enable additional tree planting around the development, with wider opportunities for improvement to existing planting in the area.
All the required consents have been obtained and road space booked with Essex Highways for the removal works. The developer (Bloor Homes) need no further approvals from Rochford District Council or Essex Highways. The removal of the tree is scheduled for the 13 February 2023.
Bloor Homes is speaking to the two nearby schools about projects to use the remains of the Oak tree and a local artist is helping.
Bat surveys were conducted for the development in accordance with methods specified in the latest published guidance (Bat Conservation Trust, Bat Surveys for Professional Ecologists: Good Practice Guidelines, 2016). All habitats were initially subject to a preliminary assessment of their suitability to support roosting, foraging and commuting bats.
The survey assigned each tree a value of negligible, low, moderate, or high suitability for roosting bats. The requirement for further survey is identified based on this assessed level of suitability. If no or low suitability potential roosting features for bats are found, then Bat Conservation Trust Guidance states that further surveys are not necessary, however, precautionary measures may still be appropriate during felling or pruning activities (section/soft felling methods).
At the Ashingdon Road development site, only one tree located set within a hedgerow leading towards Doggetts Chase was identified with moderate suitability or above for roosting bats. No works to this tree are necessary for the development. Results did not generate a requirement for further survey of the Oak tree adjacent Holt Farm School.
The existing footway/cycleway will be 3.6 metres wide over a length of about 78 metres, to allow for the provision of a right-turn lane into the site.
Of this 78 metre stretch, at its narrowest point, the section of footway/cycleway, would be reduced to c.3.25 metres for a stretch of c.15 metres. At this reduced width, the footway/cycleway exceeds the minimum technical standard for shared footways/cycleways, of 3.0 metres.
A number of safety improvements will be incorporated into the junction layout and design. These include an upgraded Toucan crossing, including a 2 metre wide refuge island to prevent overtaking in the vicinity of the schools and assist in reducing vehicle speeds and renewal of the anti-skid surfacing on the vehicle approaches to the Toucan crossing.
There will be an additional 20 meters of pedestrian guard railing, with improved visibility characteristics; upgrading of all existing guard railing to the same visibility standard; and the provision of additional road signs to alert drivers to the potential for school-children to be crossing in the area.
Prior to the submission of the planning application, Bloor Homes consulted the public and seven pre-application meetings were held with the Council to discuss the location of the junction. In June 2019 ECC Highways agreed in principle with the proposed location of the site access, and the amendments to the existing highway which are being proposed to accommodate the access and mitigate the impacts.
The right-turn lane provision is an essential element of the design, which ensures no delay to traffic already on Ashingdon Road and was confirmed as necessary by ECC in pre-application discussions. An alternative signal-controlled junction design was previously considered during the pre-application process; however, this was not favoured by ECC given that signals would cause delay to through traffic on Ashingdon Road, would require additional carriageway widening and still require the oak tree to be removed
The new access is now approved and is an integral part of the planning permission which Bloor Homes will be delivering.
Bloor Homes was due to fell the tree in October half term 2022. Unfortunately despite having all of the necessary permissions to do so, protestors climbed the tree and prevented Bloor Homes from carrying this work out. The company then had to go to court to get an injunction to stop any protestors from preventing the felling of the tree. All protestors are now not allowed to prevent Bloor Homes from carrying out this work and need to have vacated the area by 6th February 2023 ready for works to commence on 13th February 2023 during the school half term.
Bloor Homes’ financial contributions and obligations total more than £12 million. The financial contributions have been ratified by Rochford District Council and Essex County Council who were signatories of the S106 legal agreement dated 02/02/2022.
Please note: the obligations include necessary Highway works worth more than £1.3million, to be completed by Bloor and some S106 monetary values highlighted below which have been adjusted to include predicted indexation (based on trigger points).
The contributions will be released over a series of trigger points across the lifecycle of the site.
Affordable Housing: 35% of the development is allocated as one, two, three and four bedroom affordable homes.
Education: Early Years and Childcare, Primary and Secondary education contributions worth £8.1 million (based on an agreed sum per dwelling)
Open space, SUDS and Flood Alleviation Scheme: equipped play area shown on the Play Area Masterplan; sustainable drainage systems; mountain bike trail; and the approved Flood Alleviation Scheme
Allotment Land: 26 hectares to be laid out as allotments
Transportation and Highways: over £1.8 million for improvements to the local transport infrastructure – roads, buses, cycling, pedestrian crossing and a Sustainable Travel Plan
Healthcare: over £305,000 for the improvement of healthcare services in Rochford
School Landscaping Contribution: £50,000 towards the provision of landscaping improvements along the Ashingdon Road frontage of and within Holt Farm Junior School
Waste Services Contribution: £88,169 for waste services infrastructure
Library Contribution: totalling almost £250,000 (based on an agreed sum per dwelling) for the improvement and extension of the local library.
Youth Facilities Contribution: over £91,000 for the provision and enhancement of youth-based facilities in the District of Rochford
Recreation Avoidance and Mitigation Strategy (RAMS) Contribution: over £84,000 (based on an agreed sum per dwelling) towards the adopted recreation avoidance and mitigation strategy in relation to sites of ecological importance along the coast
Trees Contributions: £67,560 for the removal of the tree on Ashingdon Road and £75,000 contribution to be used by the Council for the Planting Stock Contribution Purpose
School Drop Off and Pick Up Parking: provided as part of the development to serve Holt Farm Infant School and Holt Farm Junior School
Bloor Homes is aware of its obligations to ensure safe treatment and removal of knotweed from site. We have employed highly experienced and professional specialists to treat the known presence of knotweed, and to continually monitor the site for the longer term.
At March 2023, the specialists have dug out and removed the vast majority of the knotweed at the development.
The treatment area and the overall site will be subject to annual monitoring and, if necessary, follow-up treatment. This program will continue until 3 years of no Japanese knotweed regrowth has been observed, at which point a 10-year insurance backed guarantee will come into effect covering the treatment area.
In the unlikely event that knotweed regrowth is identified in the treatment area during the guarantee period the contractor will retreat the infestation at no further cost provided that the infestation is associated with the original infestation rather than external factors such as imported soils, illegal fly-tipping etc.
As required for accredited invasive species contractors, the management plan for the knotweed infestation has been designed and carried out in accordance with industry best practice and guidance.
In addition to the above measures, purchasers can be reassured by an insurance-backed guarantee which covers the treatment area in the event that the original contractor has ceased to trade and is unable to meet their guarantee obligations. The insurance-backed guarantee will honour the terms of the written guarantee by carrying out or meeting the costs of any re-treatment works undertaken by another PCA accredited contractor.