When will the country park open and when will the first houses be built?

It is expected that work will start to make some sections of the park available for sports clubs and the general public early next year. Further development of the country park facilities will be linked to funding from the phased housing development, progress on which will depend upon the wider housing market.


Why has this site been chosen for a country park?

Conningbrook’s potential as a country park was first identified by Ashford Borough Council 12 years ago, when it recognised that the site had unique advantages in terms of its proximity to the town centre, its picturesque lakes and access to the river. With Brett as an enthusiastic supporter, the site also had the advantage of being potentially made available. The idyllic setting provided by Brett’s restored lakes presents a golden opportunity for the council to enhance the Borough’s leisure and recreational offer.


Why do we need this type of development?

There is a shortage of watersports and recreation sites in East Kent. Conningbrook Lakes will provide some much-needed facilities for people of all ages, from families to local sports groups. This includes Ashford’s UK-leading canoeing club, which currently has to travel a distance to train. The Director of Sport England has commented that Conningbrook Lakes has the potential to be one of the finest multi-sports facilities in the country.


Why do we need these homes?

The homes are needed to fund the provision of the park and also to provide Ashford with a greater choice of housing.


Will the park be accessible by people with disabilities?

Ensuring maximum accessibility is an essential element of the planning for the country park.


Will the country park affect the Julie Rose Stadium?

The Julie Rose Stadium is a valuable and well loved asset. It will benefit considerably from the wider sporting and recreational activities proposed at Conningbrook Lakes which will help to secure its future. The aim is to enhance the stadium’s profile and usage amongst residents and visitors and to improve the overall leisure offering.


What are the traffic implications?

A transport assessment and a travel plan were submitted as part of the planning application. Issues considered included traffic impact and road safety analysis. A specialist consultant worked with Ashford Borough Council, Kent County Council and the Highways Agency to ensure that traffic issues were fully considered and mitigated as necessary. .


Will the cycle and pedestrian paths link into the wider network?

Yes. You will be able to join the local footpath/cycle network that will take you onto the Kent Downs, to the historic town of Wye or via the centre of Ashford to the Willesborough Dykes wetlands beyond. The Brett Group is an enthusiastic supporter of the drive to create new footpath links and works closely with the Kentish Stour Countryside Project to make its land available.