A Green Place

The Barracks and Airfield is blessed with a rich landscape setting: a legacy of the Royal Engineers that is, at the moment, locked away. We will open up access to the lake, watercourses and green spaces, enhancing existing features and introducing new green spaces for all to enjoy.

We will draw on the inherited richness of the site to:

  • Provide strategic green corridors which support and link existing environmental assets, such as Wicken Fen and the Cam Washes
  • Create habitats and landscapes which support people and nature
  • Provide local green connections which provide safe attractive routes and spaces, including the route between the village and Denny Abbey
  • Define and support active and attractive neighbourhoods with open space and landscaped areas such as parks, play areas, playing fields and pitches, woodlands, allotments and orchards.

Provision will include:

  • Safeguarding and enhancing existing green infrastructure including species rich grassland, the lake and lakeside setting, heritage assets and the Denny Abbey setting.
  • Suitable open spaces amounting to over 100 hectares of publicly accessible open space, including parklands, grasslands, wetlands, informal and formal sport and recreation and play.
  • A new formal park adjoining the principal centre, accommodating formal sport and a flexible hardscape market square
  • Local play areas for informal and formal doorstep play within the development areas.
  • Productive landscape, promoting local food production, including allotments and community orchards.
  • A mosaic of new and existing grassland and woodland habitats managed for wildlife, but accessible to the new and existing community.
  • Retention of existing trees where their location and condition makes a positive contribution to the public realm, with a commitment to ensure no overall loss of canopy cover and a target to achieve a net gain. Existing woodland blocks will be managed to open up to safe public use, play and recreation and water management.
  • Water bodies, notably the main lake, will be retained to be publicly accessible for informal and formal recreation, to support biodiversity and public realm, and as part of the broader management of water levels and flood risk.

At this Outline stage of the planning process, when the numbers and sizes of homes coming forward has not been finalised, the land uses and amount of facilities coming forward is best described by ranges or with reference to local standards. For example, for open space South Cambridgeshire District Council measure this by the amount of land in hectares per 1,000 population. The Proposed Development will meet the District’s open space standards for outdoor sport at each key phase, with following overall open space principles:

  • All built development will be within 300m of strategic open space or additional public open space provided within development areas, and within 800m of either an equipped play area or natural play space and with access via pedestrian and cycle routes.
  • At least 1.6 ha of land per 1,000 population will be provided for outdoor sports including: natural turf pitches, artificial pitches, multi-use games areas, tennis courts, bowling green, athletics tracks, water sports and ancillary uses, including changing facilities and parking.
  • At least 0.4 ha per 1,000 population will be provided for productive landscape including allotments, community orchards and edible streets.
  • At least 0.4 ha of land per 1,000 population will be provided for informal open space.
  • Children’s play space will be provided at no less than 0.8 ha per 1,000 population comprising formal and informal play and to be included in strategic open spaces, woodland blocks and development areas.
  • No built development is proposed within the areas identified as strategic open space, woodland blocks or formal open space other than relevant to the functioning of that open space, eg through facilities which support its use.