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When we applied for planning permission in 2017 for the Community Centre, we had ideas from previous consultation about the local community groups who would want to use the centre and we used this to help shape the opening hours.
During the construction phase we have been approached by nearly 50 local groups wanting to book the centre for community activities and events. Two of these offer activities which we didn’t envisage from the outset, but we would be excited to see running from the centre. The groups will help to serve the needs in the local community, however they require the centre to open 30 minutes earlier in the morning in order to set up and operate effectively.
These groups are:
- a local business that wants to run a before school breakfast club, and an after school club from the centre. The club will serve local families whose children attend the nearby Outwoods Edge Primary School on Redwood Road. The current provision of childcare at the school is fully booked with a twelve month waiting list. We are confident this will benefit many families who struggle to find childcare. The club will run Monday to Friday during term time and in addition to helping the local community, it would also provide a significant income to help cover the running costs of the centre and ensure it will remain sustainable.
- a Church group that wishes to book the centre from 8am on Sundays to run an activity offering a breakfast service for local families. This is a regular weekly booking of the centre which will represent a significant income to the charity
We have therefore applied to the Planning Department to request permission to open the Community Centre at the earlier time of 7:30am Monday to Saturdays and from 8am on Sundays and Bank Holidays.
Construction started on site on 25th January 2019. We wanted to make sure that those living closest to the site were up to date with the project, so we delivered letter updates on Saturday 19th and Thursday 24th January 2019.
The construction phase is being overseen by Oakwood Construction and is expected to last until late August 2019. Jason Pughe is the site contact for Oakwood Construction, and he can be contacted via the office on 0116 271 1940.
As part of the original planning application for the community centre (P/17/2344/2), the Committee report (dated 31/1/18) provided guidance for opening hours for the centre, which stated in section 10:
No public access to the premises shall be allowed other than between the hours of 8.00am and 11.00pm, Monday to Saturday, and 8.30am and 10.00pm Sundays or recognised Bank Holidays.
However in the final planning permission decision document, an error was made in the correlating section:
No public access to the premises shall be allowed other than between the hours of 8.00am and 11.00pm, Monday to Saturday, and the premises shall not open on 8.30am and 10.00pm Sundays or recognised Bank Holidays.
Since the final planning permission decision document was misaligned with the original Committee report and recommendations during the public planning meeting, we were advised to submit a variation of the planning condition 10 (P/18/1792/2) to address the anomaly in the wording. This was submitted at the start of September and was approved in November.
The site was never intended to remain as green space. As part of the original Section 106 Agreement for the estate, the land was set aside for shops, a place of worship, a health centre and a community centre.
The Section 106 Agreement stated that if these do not go ahead the land reverts back to William Davis for residential housing. Please see question below for an update on this.
The Grange Park Centre group has been working towards building a new Community Centre, and have not been involved in the rest of the land.
In May 2018, William Davis submitted three planning applications relating to the site. Full details can be found on the Charnwood Planning Portal by searching for the planning application number stated below.
1. Applied for a discharge of obligations under Section 106A of P/00/2078/2: Provisions relating to part of the Local Centre on Grange Park development, P/18/0914/2.
This relates to release from provision of the following aspects of the original Section 106 Agreement due to a lack of demand: 0.5 ha for shopping or other commercial uses and 0.3 ha for community health and welfare development, including one place of worship, doctor or dentist, or such other health and welfare facilities and community uses.
This discharge of obligations does not affect provision for the Grange Park Centre community centre.
2. Planning application for 30 houses, land off Highland Drive/Knox Road, P/18/0888/2. This is on land adjacent to the planned community centre and play area.
3. Planning application for Play Areas on Grange Park Estate, P/18/0893/2.
The ‘view related documents’ section includes detailed information about the equipment that is proposed on the Highland Drive/Knox Road play park, and the Allendale Road play park (by the roundabout).
The Grange Park area, located in the south-west of Loughborough, is a growing residential development with no local facilities. Plans for a community centre have been in place since 2009, as part of a “Local Centre”, which included flats over shops, place of worship, health centre and associated parking.
The evidence of need for a community centre comes from a Feasibility Study and a Community Needs Assessment, both commissioned in 2012. These were published in 2013, and demonstrated that there is demand for a community venue.
In addition, the Grange Park Centre group carried out various consultation activities over the past six years to hear from residents in the area. People told us they wanted a centre where they can take part in a range of community activities to improve health, meet new people and positively engage children and young people. You can find further information of all our consultation activities on our website here.
We believe that the centre will help build a more cohesive, supportive community. We have been actively building links between the Grange Park, Shelthorpe and Haddon Way communities with support from Charnwood Borough Council, local agencies and groups. Across all areas there is very strong support for a new facility. You can read more about the background to the Grange Park Centre here.
Grange Park Centre is a registered charity (1157806) with four Trustees and a working committee. The group includes representatives from Grange Park, Shelthorpe and Haddon Way areas of the Shelthorpe ward:
Paul Gadd (Chair)
Rev Sue Willetts
Joanne Lipman (Secretary)
Paul Sibson (Treasurer)
For details of upcoming meetings held at The Arc, please see right-hand side of window, under Recent Posts.
There are many ideas for activities and services that could be run at the centre, but nothing has been finalised as yet. Data from engagement with stakeholders and consultation activities tells us there is a need and demand for sports clubs, children’s groups, assistance in education, skills and training, health and fitness activities, business hub, counselling and advice services, parent and toddler groups.
The centre will be designed to comply with building regulations to ensure that disabled people are able to integrate within the activities.
It is the intention that the committee and centre management will not be running any of the activities at the centre – our goal is to provide a facility which can be used by groups in the community. Activities could include promoting health, well-being, exercise and community cohesion.
We will be contacting local groups to inform them about the new facility, and also inviting others to develop new ideas which they can run from the centre. We will encourage groups using the centre to involve all groups within our society.
When we first started work on the plans for the community centre, it included disabled facilities.
During the last few months of 2017, a local resident asked us whether we could include a Changing Place within the Centre. Unfortunately, this was too late within the design process and confines of the budget to include within the design package for the planning application process at the start of December.
However, we did have lots of discussions and agreed to increase the size of the disabled facilities as much as possible to 2.5m x 2.9m within the constraints of the building footprint. This included moving some internal walls, strengthening one internal wall and moving the position of the doors into the main hall to accommodate a larger space. The larger room would accommodate a mobile hoist, adjustable height changing table, sink and wash basin. The size of the disabled facilities does not fully comply with the specification of changing places requirements as specified by the Changing Places Consortium (http://www.changing-places.org), and therefore could not be called a changing place. However we do feel that this hybrid solution will have significant benefits in providing equipment which would previously not have been possible.
The additional finance required to install the mobile hoist and adjustable height changing table will be outside of the funding we are looking for, for the building. However, we have a fund-raising plan to look for grants to fund this. One of the local residents has offered to assist us with looking for this funding, but we are happy for others to assist too. We have received a grant of £2000 towards the changing table and we are looking at additional grants for the remaining funds to purchase this once the centre is open.
The exact location of the proposed community centre had to be agreed between William Davis and Charnwood Borough Council as part of the Section 106 Agreement.
A planning application for the proposed Grange Park Community Centre was approved by the Planning Committee in February 2018, with the final position of the building reflecting feedback received from residents.
Details of the approved planning application P/17/2344/2, including the agreed position of the Centre, can be viewed on the Charnwood Borough Council’s Planning Portal.
As part of the planning application process for the Grange Park Centre, the Highways Agency assessed the area and traffic levels.
We will actively promote, as part of the Green Policy for the Centre, that people use alternative means of travel, where possible.
The Centre will have its own dedicated car park. We will work with residents and community groups using the centre, to tackle inconsiderate parking.
The Section 106 Agreement on the land for the community centre expired on 31 August 2017 and as such, the land is still owned by William Davis Ltd. A lease between William Davis and the Grange Park Centre charity has been agreed and signed, which has secured the land to the community centre for 150 years.
Planning obligations under Section 106 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 (as amended), commonly known as S106 agreements, are a mechanism which make a development proposal acceptable in planning terms, that would not otherwise be acceptable. They are focused on site specific mitigation of the impact of development. S106 Agreements are often referred to as ‘developer contributions’ along with highway contributions and the Community Infrastructure Levy.
The common uses of planning obligations are to secure affordable housing, and to specify the type and timing of this housing; and to secure financial contributions to provide infrastructure or affordable housing. However these are not the only uses for an S106 obligation. An S106 obligation can:
- restrict the development or use of the land in any specified way;
- require specified operations or activities to be carried out in, on, under or over the land;
- require the land to be used in any specified way; or
- require a sum or sums to be paid to the authority (or, to the Greater London Authority) on a specified date or dates or periodically.
The Section 106 Agreement for the area on the Grange Park estate specifies that Charnwood Borough Council will purchase the land for £1 if a viable, long-term development can be found for the site. However, if after a 10-year period the land has not been built upon, it reverts to the developer for housing.
- Begun the final stage of the tendering process to select a main building contractor
- Launched ‘Sponsor-a-Brick‘ fundraising campaign
- Securing the land: working through the legal process with William Davis Ltd for a proposal to safeguard the land for community activities for future generations
- Additional fundraising
- Announced that the funds have been secured to start building
- Finalise lease of the land from William Davis Ltd
- Appointment of main contractor
- Start construction on site
- Grand Opening
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