CHESTER RETIREMENT VILLAGE PLANS REVEALED

Retirement Villages has launched the second stage of consultation on its plans to build a new retirement village near Chester. 

Proposed for the former Beechmoor Garden Centre on Whitchurch Road, Boughton Heath, the developer has revealed details of the scheme which will include up to 147 apartments, available to buy and rent, alongside open spaces and amenities, such as a community shop, café and wellness suite, which would be open to local people.

Since the first stage of consultation in May this year, Retirement Villages has been reviewing the feedback received and using it to shape the detailed plans for the site.

Responses showed it was important to local people that the new buildings be in keeping with the local area, with thought given to the scale and size and how they integrate with green and open spaces. In response, Retirement Villages is proposing a series of villas, ranging between three and five storeys. Set back from the road and screened with planting and trees they will be less visible than the plans currently approved for the site, which was gained by another developer.

Guy Flintoft, Planning Director, Retirement Villages said: “We know that one of the main issues people had with the previous plans for the site was the design of the buildings. So, we’ve put a lot of time and effort into taking on board local feedback and looking at the character of the local area. We’re proposing a series of villas which will be set back from the road and screened with planting and trees so they are less visible from Whitchurch Road.”

Designed to be an extension of the existing community, the village will provide a range of amenities and outdoor spaces to complement those available to residents, which local people will be able to use.  These include:

  • A small ‘community shop’ which could sell vegetables from the nearby allotments alongside key groceries like milk and bread
  • A café for use by local people and those using the Park and Ride
  • A wellness suite including a gym, swimming pool and treatment rooms
  • Open spaces and a community square 
  • Walking and cycling routes through the site 
  • A sustainable transport hub with cycles for hire meaning people using the Park and Ride could cycle into Chester

Guy went on to say: “During the last consultation we asked the local community what sort of amenities they would use. It was important to people that we didn’t include facilities that would compete with what’s already in Boughton Heath so we’ve taken that on board. We hope the village will be an asset to Boughton Heath, not only encouraging a high quality of life to those residents that live there, but also bringing amenities and green spaces to those living in the surrounding area.”

It is hoped that the development can become an exemplar of sustainable development with cycle hire, electric car charging points, low energy buildings and use of renewable energy sources.  This could help Cheshire West & Chester Council tackle the climate emergency declared in the borough last year. 

The latest phase of consultation closes on 28th August 2020. A live online Q&A will be held as part of the consultation on Wednesday 19th August from 6.30pm to 7.30pm. People can sign up by visiting the website www.chesterretirementvillage.co.uk where they can also fill in an online questionnaire. 

People can also get in touch by:

  • Writing to the freepost address Freepost HAVE YOUR SAY (no stamp needed)
  • Calling 0800 689 1095 or emailing info@chesterretirementvillage.co.uk 
  • Following on facebook @retirementvillageschester or twitter @retirechester

Following this second stage of consultation, Retirement Villages is set to reveal the final plans later in the year, when a planning application is due to be submitted.   

The £32m retirement village would provide a boost to the local economy creating 25 jobs when the site is completed, plus additional jobs during construction, and bringing extra income for the Council through business rates. The site has existing planning permission, gained by another developer, also for a retirement village. 

Retirement Villages has been developing and managing purpose built, retirement communities for nearly 40 years with 16 villages across the UK. 

The village is being designed by award winning architects RCKa with Barton Willmore the planning consultant. Font Communications is managing the consultation.

For further information:

Rebecca Eatwell: rebecca@fontcomms.com / 07827 353113