O&H design guide and development in the Marston Vale shortlisted for prestigious planning award

Stewartby Park, an earlier development facilitated in the Marston Vale by O&H with Persimmon Homes has been shortlisted for a prestigious planning award.

Construction of the village in Stewartby began in 1926. Following in the footsteps of Sir Titus Salt and the Cadbury brothers, Sir Halley Stewart and his son Malcolm set about creating a village to house the local labour force who worked in their brickworks. The Stewarts wanted to provide each house with piped water, drainage facilities and electricity. A key ambition for Stewartby was to ensure that all properties were spacious in design and had their own large garden. They followed the ‘garden village’ principles, striking a harmonious balance between built form and the open countryside.

A village extension to the north of Stewartby village was then proposed in in the Bedford Local Plan and Mid Beds Local Plan in the early 2000’s. O&H was then the landowner.

So over a period of many years the Stewartby Park Design Code was created to ensure the village extension would be sensitive to its historic surrounds, true to democratic planning processes in which the Parish Council was fully engaged, and would allow effective working between the landowner, local authority and housebuilder who were willing to try something different.

This project is typical of O&H’s vision and values in action, and its long-term perspective on creating great places to live.

The aspiration for Stewartby Park was to create a new integrated part of Stewartby that would reflect and enhance the locally distinctive character of the existing village, responding to the special characteristics that are inherent to its form. The development was designed to deliver new facilities complementary to those within Stewartby, along with a mix of housing types and good quality useable open space.

Stewartby Park is designed to support a mixed and balanced community that is sustainable now and in the future, providing a safe and secure environment that responds positively to the surrounding landscape.

The Design Code and the realisation of this planning and design-led vision has now been recognised by industry experts, shortlisted for the RTPI East of England Award for Planning Excellence 2018.