Published on 8 March 2023
The future of land at Knights Lane, Tiddington which was proposed to be sold for development will now be retained by the Stratford-on-Avon District Council who will work with a local community group, 'Wild Tiddington', for use as a nature reserve.
In 1957, a former gravel pit on Knights Lane was gifted to the District Council. The land itself is enclosed by housing on all sides and is effectively land locked.
The District Council had been approached by a developer who wished to purchase the site. This offer was refused; however, the District Council subsequently received a direction from Government to either sell the land or bring the plot back into use. With this backdrop, The Cabinet considered a report at their meeting on 16 January 2023 with a recommendation to sell this land.
At the meeting in January, representatives from the local community addressed The Cabinet and were requesting the opportunity of managing the land as a nature reserve. Following these requests, The Cabinet agreed to give the community group more time to develop their proposals and for the matter to come back to Cabinet in March for further consideration.
The local residents have now formed a formally constituted group 'Wild Tiddington' and their chairperson, addressed The Cabinet this week about the future of the site and the 30-year management plan which had been drawn up.
Cabinet also heard that there had been positive discussions with Council Officers and that in improving the biodiversity of the site, the area could be preserved, and this could generate an income for the District Council.
Following a brief debate, Cabinet was pleased to endorse the plans to retain the ownership and in doing so create an enhanced haven for wildlife.
Cllr Tony Jefferson, Leader of Stratford-on-Avon District Council said: "This is an excellent example of the District Council listening to local residents in coming up with the best solution for this site. This site has been unused for over 65 years; the residents of Tiddington should be congratulated on coming together to give us the assurances that this site can be retained. We are always prepared to be proactive and positive in helping residents find workable solutions."
Cllr Kate Rolfe, ward member for Tiddington said: "This is fantastic news for the residents of Tiddington and for the newly formed residents' group 'Wild Tiddington' who will take care of the gravel pit and will also look to assist in other biodiverse areas in Tiddington.
"I would like to thank The Cabinet for agreeing this way forward and for the Deputy Chief Executive of Stratford District Council who has been supportive of this initiative right from the start."
Stratford-on-Avon District Council
Elizabeth House, Church Street,
Tel: 01789 267575