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Issue - meetings

Future Chippenham Update

Meeting: 13/12/2022 - Cabinet (Item 121)

121 Future Chippenham Update

      Report of the Chief Executive


Supporting documents:


Cllr Richard Clewer, Leader and Cabinet Member for Climate Change, MCI, Economic Development, Heritage, Arts, Tourism and Health & Wellbeing presented a report providing an update on progress of the Future Chippenham programme since the Cabinet decision in July 2022 to pause design work subject to reaching agreement on the revised Grant Determination Agreement (GDA) with Homes England.  


Cabinet received questions from Mel Boyle, Owen Inskip, Nick Parry, Richard Curr, Stewart Roberts, Helen Stride and Cllr Clare Cape in relation to this report, copies which were available to read in agenda supplement 2 on the Council’s website here.


Supplementary questions were asked by Owen Inskip, Helen Stride and Cllr Clare Cape. In response, the Leader and Cllr Botterill made the following comments, a copy of the recording is available at this link:


·       Emphasised that Future Chippenham and the Local Plan were not to be considered as the same issue.

·       The  response to cabinet questions should have included the Leaders designation alongside Cllr Botterill’s not just Cllr Botterill as was published

·        The allocation of sites for development will be determined as part of the Local Plan process

·       The original scheme was achievable subject to the local plan review and timing of key connectivity, however due to the increase in costs and inflation and lack of guaranteed timelines for connectivity risks for the Council have increased and delivery of the scheme is regrettably no longer within the risk appetite of the Council or affordable

·       As had already been confirmed as part of the Local plan review, the Council would be considering the changes to housing need figures from Government going forward

·       Improving connectivity along the A350 is necessary, especially to relieve congestion in Westbury and Melksham areas

·       Infrastructure led development  is the ambition of the Council as that responds to the concerns of communities as new development can if not properly masterplanned  leave them with necessary infrastructure coming along after residential development has taken place

·       Improvements could be made to the consultation process with communities in Chippenham and it was accepted that with the benefit of hindsight consultation in advance of the HIF application being made would have been beneficial.


The Leader reported that following Cabinet’s decision in July 2021 to seek a revision to the GDA with Homes England to support a southern only road route, and then in July 2022 to pause design work, further discussions have been taking place with Homes England. The Council is now in a position to affect a withdrawal from the HIF programme based on the mutually agreed exit from the GDA with Homes England.


The report detailed a high-level options appraisal of the existing 4 options available to the Council for its land holdings in the southern scheme. In order to comply with Cabinet’s resolution of July 2021 and July 2022 the report suggested option 4 should be pursued to promote the land to the South of Chippenham, as follows:


·       to continue working with landowners adjoining the Council’s land holdings to achieve  ...  view the full minutes text for item 121




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