Ernest Cook Trust and Gloucestershire County Council unveil new proposals for 1,500 sustainable homes


A series of new images that demonstrate how a new sustainable community in Gloucestershire could take shape have been unveiled.

The images have been released by the project led by Gloucestershire County Council and Gloucestershire-based educational charity The Ernest Cook Trust who are jointly leading proposals for a new development east of Slimbridge.

They have been shared alongside a masterplan for the sustainable ‘Garden Village’ community of approximately 1,500 homes at Wisloe, near Slimbridge which sets out the vision for the development.

Michael Birnie, Property Director at The Ernest Cook Trust, said: “These images and the masterplan show what could be achieved at Wisloe.

“The nation faces a challenge to build the homes we need whilst tackling the climate and ecological emergencies we face. As a responsible landowner The Ernest Cook Trust has an important role to play in tackling these issues by demonstrating how new homes can be designed and built in a way that recognises the importance of the environment.

“The project team is committed to working with communities as these plans progress and we look forward to hearing what people think. With the benefit of the local community’s input, we hope to shape a place everyone can be proud of.”

Landowners Gloucestershire County Council and The Ernest Cook Trust view this as an opportunity to demonstrate an innovative approach to sustainable development; to help meet the need for new homes in a way that enables existing and future residents to live as sustainably as possible.

The aspiration is for a neighbourhood that connects with the wider landscape and enhances biodiversity.

As well as places for people to live, the plans include spaces for businesses, creating new jobs for people who already live in the area as well as new residents.

A new village green could host markets and community events; a farm shop, community centre and café will create a place people can meet and socialise; and a new primary school and nursery along with walking, cycling and public transport connections, will create a place centred on community and sustainability. To support the transition to cleaner transport, the masterplan also includes provision for electric vehicle charging points on all homes.

Cllr Lynden Stowe, Cabinet member for finance and change at Gloucestershire County Council, said: “Gloucestershire County Council hold an important role supporting sustainable growth in the county.

“This means taking a proactive approach, planning ahead for the future to improve the quality of life for Gloucestershire’s communities.

“This masterplan for a new community at Wisloe is an example of us doing just this.

“We’re excited to see this masterplan progress and look forward to working with local communities to shape and refine our plans.”

Following a consultation in 2019, another consultation was held earlier this year and responses have informed the masterplan.

The plans are being promoted for inclusion in Stroud District Council’s new local plan. Engagement will continue throughout the planning process.

People can find out more and view the masterplan at the project website

A new Local Plan is scheduled to be agreed towards the end of 2022.