The key principles behind the proposed Garden Community developments are to be explored in a new consultation set to run from November.

Earlier this year North Essex Councils (Braintree, Colchester, Tendring) working alongside Essex County Council set out their ambition to meet future housing and job requirements over the coming decades through the creation of three new settlements built to Garden Community Principles.

The Councils are looking to move away from a traditional developer-led approach to one in which they will play a more active role in overseeing and delivering the communities with a focus on ensuring that infrastructure, services, health and education provision as well as the right facilities for businesses are delivered alongside or ahead of homes.

To do this they are working to control the land in which the new communities would sit, enabling them to capture the increase in land-value created by the development to then invest back into the community – a model which while not often seen in the UK has proved successful in a number of newly created communities around Europe.

Having set out this ambition within recently published Local Plans (Plans showing where and what type of development will be permitted over the coming years), the next stage of the planning process will see an individual plan created for each of the three communities, with the three borough and district councils set to discuss the launch of an initial eight week consultation going into more depth around the Garden Community principles.

If agreed, the consultation will ultimately help create a more defined plan with for each of the sites, which will then be subject to further public consultation next year.

It will be discussed by Tendring Local Plan Committee on Thursday 2 November and Colchester and Braintree’s Local Plan Committees on Monday 6 November. with the aim to launch the consultation on the 13th November.