Stonebridge Cross Business Park
Client: Stoford Developments Ltd / AXA Real Estates Investment Managers
Location: Droitwich Spa, West Midlands
Size: 10 Ha
Status: Allocated in South Worcestershire Development Plan (employment use) in 2016
Tyler Parkes was responsible for changing Wychavon District Council’s emerging policies and proposals in the South Worcestershire Development Plan (SWDP). In early versions of the SWDP, our Client’s land was proposed to be retained as greenfield countryside. Initially, the Council's landscape, conservation, ecology and planning officers (in terms of employment land need), objected to our proposal to allocate the 10 hectare site for employment use as an extension to the Stonebridge Cross Business Park.
There were a number of issues to overcome, not least the proximity of Grade I Listed Westwood House and the surrounding Grade II registered Westwood Park. We commissioned a number of expert reports, including a landscape and visual impact assessment, historical context, an employment study, and an ecological survey of the areas of most concern. We arranged meetings with Council officers and early on won the support of the economic development officers.
Our representations were submitted in response to each SWDP consultation, supported by the commissioned expert evidence. At the Preferred Options stage, we critically assessed the Council’s evidence and policy direction calling into question the ‘soundness’ of the emerging plan. We demonstrated the need for additional employment land and set out the landscape mitigation measures to minimise the visual impact of the proposal.
In response to our representations, Wychavon District decided to include our Client’s 10 hectare site in the final Submission version of the SWDP as an allocated employment site for B1, B2 and B8 use. The SWDP was adopted in February 2016 following public examination, including Policy SWD49/3 Stonebridge Cross Business Park.