Blooming silver gilt for Kings Hill
Careful planning and substantial investment in the landscape at Kings Hill has paid off for developer Liberty Property Trust, which has scooped three silver gilt awards in this year’s South & South East in Bloom competition.
The awards were for Conservation Area, Village Centre and Business Landscape – and in the latter it was only three marks off a gold medal.
Liberty works closely with landscapers Coblands to ensure that the planting provides colour and texture throughout the year, planting thousands of bulbs and sowing swathes of wild flower seeds in the public areas and along the paths and roadsides.
There is also a ten-year plan worked up with Susan Deakin Ecology to ensure that the 50 acres of Conservation Area of natural and ancient woodland is protected and strictly managed in a sympathetic and sustainable manner with the planting of indigenous trees.
The judges said that the design and landscaping of the public realm at Kings Hill has been carefully thought out and is managed to create what is a unique area in which people can live, work and play. They added that it was ‘a well planted, colourful and relaxing environment with some exceptional planting schemes’.
“We are absolutely delighted to have won three silver gilt awards and are aiming for gold next year,” said Liberty’s estate manager Susan Davies. “Placemaking is key to Kings Hill’s success and we understand how important it is to create an attractive and relaxing environment for people working, living and visiting here. To have the endorsement of the judges – as well as their comments on how we can make things even better – is proof that we are succeeding.
“At 800 acres Kings Hill is a large site in which we are able to create different landscapes – from wildflowers to woodland and formal planting to garden flowers.”
Kings Hill is a 24 hour live, work and play contemporary garden village, which provides a high quality of life with jobs, amenities, homes, schools and other community infrastructure all within walking distance. Amenities include an 18 hole golf course, Waitrose and Asda stores plus other convenience retail, three schools, Sports Park, cricket pitch and two gyms including David Lloyd, acres of woodland and open space and miles of foot and cycle paths.
There are around 200 businesses on site employing some 5,000 people and, with approximately 8,000 residents at Kings Hill too, there is a ready workforce on the doorstep.
Work on the next phase of Kings Hill’s residential development is scheduled to start later this year and will see the delivery of 635 much needed homes including affordable, an extension to the community centre, additional allotments, trim trails and sports pitches for Kings Hill Sports Park. Land will also be provided for the development of a place of worship. A third primary school has already opened and received its first pupils this term.
Employment land remains for more commercial development and the creation of a further 3,000 jobs.