Conningbrook Lakes Masterplan Consultation

Background

Conningbrook Lakes Country Park is a nature reserve situated close to the Julie Rose Stadium. The reserve is open to the public, providing a gateway for walkers and cyclists to explore the Stour Valley. Visitors to the park can also take part in water-based activities.

The country park opened on Monday 25 May 2015 and is managed by a partnership involving Ashford Borough Council, Ashford Leisure Trust, Kent Wildlife Trust and Mid Kent Fisheries. The park is split into two main zones – the two smaller lakes and surrounding land is managed by the Kent Wildlife Trust, and the larger main lake is currently managed by Ashford Leisure Trust, soon to be managed by Freedom Leisure at the start of February. Prior to the park opening, consultation took place to describe the overall ambitions for the park.

Ashford Borough Council holds a long term lease on a large part of the park and is further developing the site as part of the council’s wider Open Space Strategy (2017-2030). It is designated as a Strategic Park, which means that it will have a number of functions – it will provide a mix of passive, active and recreational facilities, while still protecting the natural environment.

Current Position

Some works have already taken place on the site to make it more accessible to the public and enable organisations to run their activities. This includes installation of a basic access road, new permanent concrete slipway and temporary storage facilities and an aeration system being installed in the lake.

We want to further develop the temporary facilities listed above into permanent fixtures, as well as install the following elements:

  • A new children’s destination play area;
  • Picnic areas;
  • Access paths;
  • Signage;
  • Interpretation;
  • Public art;
  • Country park car parking;
  • New access road;
  • Enhanced conservation/landscaped areas, and;
  • Changing facilities

A new housing development is also planned next to the site, with the first few homes already being built.

The council has put forward a Masterplan, which maps out the locations of the proposed elements and new infrastructure. Within the masterplan there is a section that includes options for incorporating other features within the park at a later date, if the funding is available.

Some consultation has taken place on the draft masterplan during 2018 and 2019 which has helped to shape the plan into the one we are presenting to you. This has included:

  • A stakeholder workshop at the Julie Rose Stadium, including ward members and park users
  • Consultation with the Victoria Park and Conningbrook Park Advisory Committee during 2018 and 2019
  • Further consultation with individual stakeholder groups
  • Consultation with Ashford Access Group
  • Meetings with Lake and Country Park users
  • Discussions with the council’s Cabinet Members and Management Team.

The Masterplan was seen by Cabinet on 16 July 2019, and approved to go out to public consultation.

A brand new play area is also being developed at the lakes.

What we would like from you

We would like to hear what you think of the final draft proposals for Conningbrook Lakes Country Park. We would like to understand who is using the park at the moment. Having previously consulted on the principles for the design of the site with stakeholders, we would like to know whether you think this vision for the site will achieve these design principles, and encourage people to visit the park. Overall, we want to understand public opinion of the designs and the council’s approach, and address any major concerns prior to development commencing.

Your comments will be fed into a final stage of minor amendments to the design specification.

We are also consulting on a new play area that will be developed on this site. We would like to hear your ideas about what sort of equipment, themes and activities should be available at this play area.

How you can take part

You can have your say on the consultation by completing our online questionnaires - you can find these below.

You can also print out the questionnaires (printable versions are below) and return them to us at:

Corporate Policy

Ashford Borough Council

Tannery Lane

Ashford

Kent

TN23 1PL

What happens next?

Once the consultation has closed, we will analyse all the feedback and report these findings back. We will use your feedback to shape the final designs before we move forward to the next stages of development.

The consultation will close on Monday 02 March 2020.

For any questions on the consultation, please contact tellusyourviews@ashford.gov.uk

Privacy Policy

Ashford Borough Council (ABC) is the data controller for any personal information collected during this consultation. Where possible consultation are designed in a way as to not collect or minimise the collection of any directly identifiable personal information; however, personal information may be collected as part of your answers to any open questions.

In some cases if the consultation is a statutory requirement, for example to inform the Local Plan, given the statutory status of the type of consultation, relevant regulations, and the public interest in making information on this type of consultations available, it may be appropriate for us to make a wide range of information and documents available on our website, however this will be explained in more detail during the specific consultation document.

During consultations processing is generally conducted under the public interest legal basis and any collected information will be held for as long as it is needed to inform our strategy. For more information about your data protection rights please see the Council’s data protection pages which can be found at www.ashford.gov.uk or contact the Data Protection Officer at The Data Protection Officer, Ashford Borough Council, Civic Centre, Tannery Lane, Ashford TN23 1PL.

Timeline

  • Opened
    20 Jan 2020 at 00:00
  • Closed
    6 Mar 2020 at 23:59

Documents