Regeneration

FIRST PHASE OF £100M REGENERATION OF WOLVERTON WORKS BEGINS

St. Modwen to start construction on new Lidl store in Wolverton

St. Modwen, the UK’s leading regeneration specialist, will commence the first phase of its £100m regeneration of Wolverton Works in early July, with the construction of a new Lidl store on Stratford Road. The new store, to be built on vacant land to the east of the site, is due to open in Spring 2018 and will create up to 40 new jobs.

Gary Morris, Senior Development Manager for St. Modwen’s Northern Home Counties Regional Office comments: “Having received planning permission for the new Lidl store last year, we are pleased and excited to be entering the delivery stage for this first phase of our major regeneration proposals for Wolverton Works. We believe that Lidl’s strong brand offering quality and value will add to the choice of retailing available to the Wolverton community.”

Lidl UK’s Regional Head of Property, Jeremy Lee, commented: “There’s been much anticipation for this new Lidl store and it’s great that St. Modwen is now in a position to break the ground and start the build. We are extremely grateful for all the support that we have received so far, and look forward to offering our fresh, quality, great value products to Wolverton residents in the not too distant future.”

Anyone interested in jobs at the new Lidl store will be able to apply through the Lidl careers website http://careers.lidl.co.uk/cps/rde/career_lidl_uk/hs.xsl/index.htm


Background notes

Planning

In respect of the regeneration of the whole of Wolverton Works, Milton Keynes Council’s planning committee voted to grant outline planning consent in November 2016, subject to completion of legal agreements. Once these agreements are completed and the consent issued, the next stage will be the preparation of further planning applications to determine the exact designs of the new buildings. No buildings can be demolished until plans for replacement buildings have been presented, consulted upon and approved.

The Lidl store is being delivered under a separate, detailed planning consent which was granted in September 2016.

Phasing

The development will be delivered in phases to allow Knorr-Bremse, the current operator of the Works site, to continue to operate seamlessly without any interruption to their business activities. In broad terms, following completion of the first phase (Lidl store), phase two will see the delivery of new premises for Knorr-Bremse with the third and final phase being the construction of new homes, the community/ heritage centre and public spaces.

Key features of the regeneration plans

· Jobs: Provision of new business space for Knorr-Bremse RailServices Ltd, protected for future rail-related employment use only

· Supporting small businesses: New business space providing premises for small/ medium size businesses and start-ups

· Homes for all: Up to 375 new homes - a mix for all ages, family sizes, needs and pockets

· Funding for social infrastructure: contribution of c.£4m towards vital services of which £3m is allocated to education

· Heritage value: Opening up what is currently a closed site, existing buildings’ facade retention and heritage features incorporated throughout public spaces

· New community space: The potential to create a railway heritage centre – St. Modwen is discussing opportunities with Milton Keynes Museum

· New open spaces: Provision of a new public square and multiple landscaped spaces equivalent, in total, to the size of 2 football pitches

· Architectural identity: Use of a ‘Design Guide’ to ensure new buildings reflect the Conservation Area with pitched roofs, use of brick, terraced housing and other key features

· Ecology: Enhanced nature conservation and biodiversity where there is currently concrete across the site

· War memorial: Publically accessible space allocated for a memorial

· Grand Union Canal: New public footpath running parallel to the canal

Aquaduct and Canal

The Grand Union Canal is Britain's longest, the trunk route of the canals, linking London to Birmingham. There are beautiful walks to take with the family, friends and dogs along the canal passing rolling countryside.

As you walk along the canal from Old Wolverton you can discover the The Iron Trunk Aqueduct which is a magnificent Georgian structure, which carries the Grand Union Canal over the River Ouse. In 2011 the Iron Trunk Aqueduct celebrated its bicentenary and the Town Council were awarded a grant from the Lottery to invest in improvements.

Follow the link for a brief history of the Iron Trunk Aqueduct and to download the Iron Aqueduct Trails with places of interest you can visit along the way.

Floodplain Forest Nature Reserve

The Parks Trust implemented the first phase of public access infrastructure at the Floodplain Forest site at Manor Farm, Old Wolverton. The new paths and bird hides provide a set of easy access routes for visitors. Wildlife is flourishing at the site in abundance and the wetland is fast becoming a popular spot for bird watchers.

On Thursday 25th August 2016 the site was officially opened to the public by Adam Henson, farmer and rural TV presenter.

  • The Floodplain Forest is a 48 hectare (120 acre) habitat creation project made possible by extracting gravel and sand reserves from beneath an area of agriculturally improved grazing land.
  • Floodplain forests are complex habitats which include water channels, ponds, grasslands and scrubland as well as woodland. Natural floodplain forests are now a rare type of habitat.
  • The mineral extraction from the site was undertaken by Henson UK. It began in 2007 and was completed in 2013. The supply of minerals was valuable towards meeting local demand.
  • The post-extraction restoration scheme has created a mosaic of water channels, pools, marshy areas and islands. These are becoming colonised by wildlife and will develop into a diverse ecosystem providing habitat for many different species.
  • Since its creation, the newly remodelled landscape has been flooded from the River Great Ouse several times. This is an important feature of the habitat and is beneficial to flood management because the project has increased the holding capacity for the floodplain.
  • The Nature Reserve is owned and will be managed by the Parks Trust for the local community and visitors to experience and enjoy the new landscape and the wildlife it will attract.
  • The income The Parks Trust received from the sale of the minerals from the site is held in a special fund for use only on the Nature Reserve, including the provision and upkeep of the public access facilities.

Milton Keynes Museum

The Museum hosts local artefacts relating to the heritage of Milton Keynes. This is a great place to visit with all the family to learn about the rich history of our railway towns, farming and printing industry and much more. For more information visit their website.