Welcome to the Aldermaston Park website. Here you can find a summary of our plans for the site. We have now submitted a planning application for the restoration and conversion of the Manor House, refurbishment and extension of the lodges, works to a number of historic features and the parkland and the construction of 227 homes on the northern part of the site. All detailed information regarding this planning application can be viewed via the West Berkshire Council site www.westberks.gov.uk.
Our proposals for 227 homes on the eastern side of the site are, we believe, the only viable way of providing the funds that will enable the Manor and the park to be restored and maintained. Since Praxis bought the site in 2014, its agents have been seeking occupiers for the site for a range of uses, from hotel to office space, education to religious retreat. All the while the Manor and park have been deteriorating further, despite our investment in their upkeep.
With a shortage of housing across West Berkshire, we are also providing valuable homes for local families. Since the previous public exhibition, we have been developing these plans and undertaking a wide range of studies and consultations to ensure that the scheme restores and reinstates as much of the listed structures and landscape as possible, whilst creating a sustainable, high quality new neighbourhood that can comfortably co-exist with Aldermaston village.
At the heart of our proposals is the desire to save the Manor House and restore its original setting. To do this, Portland House and Oxford House will be demolished and large areas of car parking replaced by appropriate landscaping. The Manor House itself will be sensitively converted into 23 high quality apartments with original historic features remaining intact. Given the importance of the Manor and parkland we have consulted with Historic England and West Berkshire Council’s Conservation department on our plans.
We have undertaken a large number of studies to identify important trees as well as the wildlife including badgers, invertebrates, bats, dormice, great crested newts and breeding birds and have liaised with West Berkshire Council’s Ecologist on our approach.We will be protecting habitats as far as possible and providing alternatives throughout the estate to replace any lost through the development.
The proposed development provides an opportunity to restore the former parkland of the estate, including securing the future of many veteran trees and restoring and enhancing woodland habitats. In particular, the approach to the landscape includes:
The layout of the new homes has been designed to ensure that no ancient trees will be lost and new water features will be introduced to create new habitats. Grassland lost through the development will be replaced across the site.
Above: Proposed CGI of Gatehouse Lodges
Alongside the Manor House and parkland our scheme enables the lodges and other historic structures on the site to be repaired and restored. The five lodges and former stable block will be refurbished and sensitively extended to provide additional homes whilst other listed structures such as the Greenhouse, Venison House and Ice House will be restored.
The “Enabling Development” proposes 227 homes on the eastern boundary of the site. Our scheme includes small terraces of two and three-bedroom homes as well as larger detached four and five bedroom properties to create a thriving mixed community with a mix of family types and age groups. We will create new access to and from the site from Red Lane and create a new neighbourhood to complement Aldermaston Village.
Our proposals are being submitted as an Enabling Development as, without the development of the additional housing, the restoration of the Manor House, parkland and other listed structures would not be possible. The restoration and ongoing maintenance costs of the site can’t be borne by the conversion of the Manor House alone.
High quality homes have been designed using the topographical features of the site to minimise the visual impact from the Manor House and preserve the historic landscape. Natural water features and play space will provide attractive amenities for the new residents.
We have undertaken extensive analysis of the vehicle movements that would be generated by the new homes, by monitoring current traffic in three locations and modelling the predicted traffic using the TRICS database – the national standard for trip generation analysis.
Cycling will be encouraged by creating cycle paths throughout the site and providing secure cycle storage. The viability of additional bus services to schools and stations for residents is being explored and a car club will be established as part of the management of the site.
Looking at the peak hours of 8.00 – 9.00am and 5.00 – 6.00pm our studies show:
We have agreed that a piece of land is to be gifted to the Church so that it can have its own independent parking and a site for the much-needed amenity block, helping to secure its future.
A dedicated management company will be created for the site with a full-time on-site manager providing a safe, secure environment which is well maintained.
As part of the planning process, we will be paying the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) to the local authority. The CIL is intended to be spent on infrastructure that is needed to support the development and can be used for a variety of things including schools, road schemes, health facilities and sports and leisure facilities. We estimate the CIL payment to be in the region of £3 million, a proportion of which will be allocated to the Parish Council.
The costs of the restoration and repair exceed the money that can be made by converting the Manor House and lodges to homes. The difference between these is called the Conservation Deficit. The figure for this is in excess of £17 million.
We are currently spending almost £1/2 million each year to try to prevent further deterioration on the site.
All our figures are being scrutinised by West Berkshire Council and its independent consultants to ensure they agree with our calculations.