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Image of the Kents Orchard development.

Planning for success in national award scheme

A small housing scheme in Houghton has been shortlisted for a national planning award.

The Kents Orchard application was approved by Test Valley Borough Council in 2016 and saw six houses built with parking and landscaping, including an orchard, following the demolition of outbuildings already on the site.

Now, the finished article has been shortlisted for the Excellence in Planning for Homes (small) category for the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) Awards for Planning Excellence 2019.

Despite the number of entries rising by almost ten per cent this year, and the high quality of submissions noted by the judges, Kents Orchard will compete for the top prize at the awards ceremony in London this April.

Planning portfolio holder and deputy leader, councillor Nick Adams-King, said: “We’re really pleased that the hard work our officers do has been recognised. The Kents Orchard scheme has turned out very well and that’s a credit to the council as well as the builders, Metis Homes, too.

“I realise there will be some tough competition but it would be fantastic to see TVBC come home with the top prize, which would be really deserved.”

RTPI President Ian Tant MRTPI, said: “Many congratulations to all this year’s finalists, who demonstrate outstanding contributions to planning, producing a positive effect on our communities, the economy and the environment.

“They have shown how planners can use their passion and skills to meet needs, deliver high quality design and tackle environmental challenges – they should all be proud of their role as a force for good in society.”

The winners will be announced in London on April 24.