Outline planning permission for Otterpool Park was granted on 4 April 2023. The first housebuilders will be announced this year and early work on site is expected in winter 2023.
When is it happening?
The new community will be delivered in phases over approximately three decades.
Our timeline sets out the story so far.
Otterpool Park is allocated in Folkestone & Hythe District Council’s Local Plan. An amended outline planning application, complete with results of extensive new survey work, is submitted, responding to representations of statutory consultees and the wider community.
Public views are sought on Phase One of Otterpool Park, with a focus on the town centre and a new public park set around Westenhanger Castle. This phase includes the first new homes, as well as commercial, retail and community facilities.
Otterpool Park LLP is established (wholly owned by Folkestone & Hythe District Council), as the master developer to drive forward proposals for the new garden town.
An outline planning application is submitted for a new mixed-use community comprising 50% green space, 8,500 homes as well as the infrastructure and community facilities to support a sustainable development of this scale. £1.25m in further government funding for Otterpool Park is announced. Folkestone & Hythe District Council purchases Westenhanger Castle, to become the centrepiece of the garden town.
Homes England invests in Otterpool Park, investing £7.5 million in the project by purchasing the old airfield at Lympne, which will form part of the overall scheme. An updated version of the masterplan is published with a third series of community engagement events taking place.
A draft master plan for Otterpool Park is published setting out the initial vision. Community engagement continues and the first stage of a feasibility and capacity study is completed this year along with the publication of a Charter for Otterpool Park. This set out the district’s aspirations for the new garden town, a healthy, active, sustainable community with opportunities for new strategic employment space, lots of open space and high design standards for the proposed new homes.
Shepway District Council (now Folkestone & Hythe District Council) publishes its Expression of Interest in being part of the government’s garden communities programme. The local authority gets the go ahead to progress the development of a new garden town called Otterpool Park. The first of a series of community engagement events is held.