Airfield Development

Over a hundred people attended a second public consultation event on the development of a Site Development Brief (SDB) for Winkleigh Airfield. This was held at Winkleigh Community Centre on Saturday 25th April. Earlier consultation had established the objectives for the SDB as promoting improved employment and recreation opportunities for Winkleigh and surrounding communities while encouraging landscape restoration and improved public access.

At this event possible options were tested to see how well they could deliver these objectives and to assess the impact they might have. People gave their assessment of the five possible options these explored different ways in which the site could be developed by landowners in the future. The options presented were two for limited change and three for different degrees of more significant change. Option 1 was to refine current policy and Option 2 to reduce the scope for development. Options 3a and 3b offered mixed use within a reduced development area and Option 4 offered employment use within a refined development boundary.

Despite the complexity of the task people made some keen judgements and gave helpful comments on how the options could be improved or developed. The views given will be taken into account by the consultant team as they go on to develop a Draft Site Development Brief.

This stage of public consultation will inform the development of a Draft SDB in the following ways:

  • The boundary for development should be great enough to secure a scale of landscape restoration that would have a significant impact. This would have a boundary similar to 3b or 4.
  • The amount of employment needed in proportion to the Winkleigh and surrounding population should be tested further along with the traffic impact of different scales of development.
  • The preferred option should promote mainly small scale and/or lower impact employment uses possibly including distinct areas of combined residential and employment use or live/work.
  • The visual impact of development on agricultural land should be tested further.
  • The distinctions between areas of high landscape quality, of reasonable quality and in poor condition will be refined further and this should inform the priorities for areas of development and restoration.
  • Existing businesses on the Airfield will be more closely consulted and, where feasible and appropriate, scope for their future development integrated further in the SDB.
  • Public access should continue to be developed and integrated in the SDB although the scope to deliver a publicly accessible building should be tested further.
  • The Steering Group should test the appetite for people to lead a community development trust and if appropriate determine the mechanism that could facilitate this.

The Draft SDB will also be consulted on between July and September 2009 when there will be further opportunity for people to make comments.

Click if you wish to see the full Summary of Public Consultation or the Options for Winkleigh Airfield SDB as exhibited.