We believe there is an exciting opportunity at Glynchbrook to create a sustainable new settlement by co-locating homes, leisure and employment on a site served by a renewable led micro energy grid, and located immediately south of the M50 motorway in the north of Forest of Dean District.

Glynchbrook is located just off Junction 2 on the M50 motorway, approximately 12.5km west of Tewkesbury and 16.5km north west of Gloucester. The towns of Ledbury (7km) and Hereford (25km) lie to the north west, with Malvern located 13.5km to the north. The smaller settlements of Redmarley d’Abitot, Playley Green, Lowbands and Pendock are located nearby but are physically detached from the proposal site.

This webpage provides further information on the vision for this new community and the opportunity to provide comments and feedback on the ideas being explored.  Please complete the questionnaire and comments section by clicking on the ‘Have Your Say’ tabs above or below. Please provide your response to this consultation by 30th March 2024.

About Glynchbrook

Situated at the northern edge of the Forest of Dean District at the meeting point of Gloucestershire, Worcestershire, and Herefordshire, Glynchbrook will be a new gateway to the north of the district, and a new community with sustainability at its heart by balancing work, leisure, wellbeing and healthy living.

Glynchbrook will be a visionary, vibrant and highly sustainable place that will inspire those who live, work and visit. Importantly, it will provide all the necessary physical and community infrastructure to support the growth of a place that will offer a strong sense of community, destination, and place that can support and integrate with existing local communities.

The new settlement will comprise a mix of up to 3,000 homes, and workspaces to support a range of circa 3,000 new jobs, as well as community, education, recreational, health and retail facilities. It will support wider existing employment areas, develop, and provide hi-tech support to the three counties farming communities and link to regional urban centres with strategic transport links. It will be a high-quality, self-sustaining place and offer lasting value to existing surrounding communities.

Glynchbrook will look beyond its boundaries to support the existing and growing economies of the immediate area, the Forest of Dean, and the three counties. It will leverage its strategic location to support both the established and developing employment areas nearby, whilst generating its own identity as a distinctive new settlement and economically buoyant destination.

Why a new settlement?

The concept of meeting some of the Forest’s housing needs by creating a sustainable new settlement in the District is not a new one, having first been proposed by the Council in 2020 through its emerging new Local Plan process.  Although the Council’s preferred strategy for meeting these needs does not currently include a new settlement, the benefits of doing so remain compelling, having regard to both the existing and longer terms needs of the district to provide enhanced employment opportunities and new homes including affordable housing. The District’s environmental constraints, including the areas of statutory forest, require new approaches to development to ensure longer terms needs continue to be met sustainably.  

The context for this is that Forest of Dean District Council has a need to deliver around 7,500 dwellings in the period to 2041, with over 4,000 dwellings required from new development sites yet to be identified. In planning for this level of growth, the traditional locations for the concentrating of new growth at Lydney, Cinderford and Coleford are becoming increasingly constrained and are also failing to deliver balanced growth of jobs alongside housing.

By contrast, a new settlement in the north of the district with direct access to the motorway network presents a unique opportunity to secure investment to deliver a balanced community by placing jobs and community infrastructure alongside new homes. The employment offer will be diverse, but with focus towards generating synergy for the agri-tech, science, cyber and energy sectors, including research, development and education functions to create a sub-regional economic hub.

The vision for Glynchbrook is to deliver an economic gateway into the Forest of Dean, acting as a catalyst for further investment and jobs growth into the district. The new village will promote sustainable living and healthy lifestyles with highly accessible network of natural amenity spaces for recreation and well-being. The network of amenity spaces and recreational routes within the village will also serve the wider local community and visitors by providing a new leisure/outdoor amenity destination in the northern part of the district.

Energy and Climate Sustainability

Creation of a new settlement presents the unique opportunity to design and engineer a masterplanned community in a manner which promotes environmental guardianship and a positive response to climate change including carbon neutrality, a green energy strategy and low energy consumption from the outset. Central to this objective is a community owned micro energy grid meaning the village generates all the energy it needs on-site. Homes and business will be connected to a Glynchbrook district heating and power network.

New buildings will take a fabric first approach to reduce energy use in the design and constructions phases, and passive design concepts will help maximise energy efficiency.

The combination of measures taken in the masterplanning and detailed design of Glynchbrook will result in a pioneering standard of sustainable design. This aligns with Forest of Dean District Council’s commitment to carbon neutrality by proposing an energy positive, net zero development through a secure, resilient and affordable energy system.

Natural Environment and Biodiversity

Glynchbrook will be a landscape-led settlement, developed around extensive green and blue spaces and corridors that respond to the landscape character of the site and its context, incorporating existing landscape and water features into the development, maximising opportunities for biodiversity net gain and habitat creation alongside recreational spaces.  

Established trees and hedgerows will be retained wherever possible and an extensive landscape strategy for new native species planting will complement existing green infrastructure, combining to harmonise the settlement’s built form with its surrounding landscape context. 

Transport & Travel

The promotion of sustainable transport choices including mobility hubs and connection to other settlements, particularly Newent and Ledbury, is central to the concept of a new settlement. The masterplan envisages a series of connected communities and facilities with a clear structure and hierarchy of movement. It places sustainable, active movement choices at the heart of the village with convenient connections to a network of footpaths and cycle routes, linking residential streets with community infrastructure including education, health and service provision, recreational spaces and employment areas. Glynchbrook will develop a series of 15-minute walkable neighbourhoods to provide everyone with access to all key areas of the village within a 15-minute walk of their home.

The transportation strategy will also explore opportunities for bus connectivity with Ledbury to the north, and Newent and Gloucester to the south. In addition, all homes and businesses will promote fully electric transport with chargers and battery storage to enable smart charging.

Have Your Say

We are keen to hear opinions from across Forest of Dean District and beyond, regarding the Glynchbrook proposal.  We look forward to receiving your responses to the consultation questions along with any other comments you may have in the form below.

The context of the consultation questions is the requirement for the district to plan for in-excess of 4,000 new homes over the next 20 years, with further longer term needs beyond.

Next Steps

We will carefully review the feedback received which will inform our next steps as we consider further promotion of the site to the Forest of Dean Local Plan.

If you have any further queries regarding the proposals, please do not hesitate to contact us at info@blackboxplanning.co.uk