After years of searching the Wilburton CLT were finally able to secure a site to provide much needed affordable housing in the village. This has followed on from the success of the CLT in the neighbouring village of Stretham, where the Trust have been working with local residents to initiate a development of 100 new houses, where the local community could have their say about the appearance, layout and density of the new development, and collectively benefit from a new village green and other public open spaces and crucially, the acquisition of 25 new affordable homes for the CLT to allocate to local residents in the village with the greatest need.
Haysom Ward Miller have been part of an ongoing engagement programme in Stretham and now Wilburton which has included consultations with local residents, the Parish Council, the District Council, local schools and various other stakeholders to develop these sites. The engagement for this site began with an analysis of how the village of Wilburton had evolved over the last 100 years, and we were able to identify from the local residents which patterns of development were liked and which were less liked.
The more recent estates were regarded as less favourable, whereas the pattern of the high street was much preferred, with close grained compact houses lining the street, and narrow alleyways leading to various yards, courts and commercial spaces behind the frontage. The other pattern identified was the rural farmstead, with buildings of various sizes and scales, from sheds through to large barns and manor houses, all clustered around central courts.
The CLT had set a limit on the number of houses to be built, and the site is far larger than required for the houses only, which has provided a wealth of opportunity for community green spaces, including a village green, community orchards, meadows, woodlands, etc. The layout of the site has been informed by these landscaping opportunities, with a green corridor running through the site connecting green spaces to the wider landscape and the houses laid out in linear arrangement or in clusters following the historic patterns of development.