Stapleford Down

Stapleford Down

Hello & Welcome

The proposals you will see today are about creating a retirement village set in an extensive country park with life-enhancing health and wellness facilities, easy access to local shops and new and existing transport connections.

The concept design is being developed by Axis Land Partnerships, part of the Sir Robert McAlpine Group.

“The McAlpine business is built on 150 years of successful partnerships. As a family business, we care for and depend on each other. At Axis we believe the same partnership approach is the best way to deliver new development for communities that leaves a positive legacy. This collaborative and respectful approach is the foundation of our business culture.”

Phil Grant, Director Axis Land Partnerships.


We would like your views

This is the first consultation event on emerging ideas & proposals to develop a state-of-the-art retirement village called Stapleford Down with modern facilities and a new 50 acre country park which would be open to all the community.

We’d like your input on subjects such as; the retirement village concept, facilities that could be included and the proposed new country park, to help shape the proposals at this stage before we work up more detailed plans and prior to submitting a planning application to South Cambridgeshire District Council. Please read more about our proposals and tell us what you think. Thank you.

What are we proposing?

Through building a retirement village we would deliver high quality housing options for older people along with tailored support services, including;

*Exact tenure mix is subject to further planning consents
**Exact range and availability subject to the selection of a preferred retirement village operator

What is happening when?


What is a Retirement Village?

A Retirement Village is very different from a care home

A retirement village is also known as retirement community, assisted living, extra care or housing with care and each development is unique. Through clever design, the right location and built-in indoor and outdoor facilities, this type of housing with care and living environment aims to deliver a life-enhancing impact for those that live there as well as the wider community;

*Exact range and availability subject to the selection of a preferred retirement village operator


Why do we need a Retirement Village here?

The 2019-2035 Greater Cambridgeshire Housing Strategy

Census data and a survey undertaken in 2017 as a part of the evidence base for the Stapleford Neighbourhood Plan identified that:

Most people who move into a retirement village already live in the local area

The Local Need for a Retirement Village

For these reasons, we believe Stapleford is a good location for a retirement village as it has excellent transport links and enables local people to move out of their existing homes should they wish to, and into local, more adaptable homes, without retiring from life and whilst continue enjoy living in the local area, as well as offering the potential to free-up larger homes more suited to families, at the same time.


Where is the proposed Retirement Village located?


Transport, Connectivity and Context


People would be able to access the retirement village and country park a number of ways via multi-user paths enabling walking and running in open countryside, and access to public transport and main roads around the edges


There is an opportunity for ecological and landscape improvements, including an extensive country park with chalk grassland planting, public access, footpaths and large areas of new wildlife habitat.


It would maximise opportunities for the wider community to access health and wellbeing facilities, a new 50 acre country park , new footpaths and multiuser path, landscaped pathways and potential new transport facilities.

The development of the retirement village does not depend on the delivery of the CAM in this location. Whilst the Greater Cambridge Partnership’s CAM route has the potential to offer real benefits for the village: fast, direct and frequent links with Cambridge and key destinations in the vicinity, As a representative of the landowner, we have had discussions with the GCP about the proposed stop location and are aware that this is a preferred route so we have made provision for it in our plans.


Concept Design

High quality housing and facilities with optional care and support, plus a new 50 acre country park

We propose a sensitive design, in-keeping with the local and surrounding area and landscape enriched by a new 50 acre country park – that’s equivalent to approximately 21 rugby pitches;

1. Access from Haverhill Road

2. Main building could include; care suites and facilities, administration, dining areas, hairdressers, swimming pool, salon and wellness facilities, activity spaces and shuttle-bus service stop

3. Mix of 1 bedroom and 2 bedroom homes (apartments) for sale, rent or shared-ownership*

4. Pedestrian and cycle access to Stapleford village (5 min walk) and Shelford village centre (15 min walk / 5 min cycle)

5. Access to proposed CAM stop and multi-user path

6. Potential location for outdoor amenities

7. New 50 acre country park accessible to everyone for walking, leisure and recreation


*Exact tenure mix is subject to further planning consents


A new 50 Acre Country Park

More than 70% of the development area is proposed as a new country park

The new country park at Stapleford Down will be a place for all to enjoy, exercise and get close to nature. The 50 acre county park is equivalent in size to approximately 21 rugby pitches or 40 football pitches.

This would potentially increase the existing rich countryside amenities such as Magog Downs and Wandlebury Woods, both of which are popular and busy local outdoor areas.

Extensive areas of agricultural land will be opened up for public access, with wildflower and chalk grassland planting.

Chalk grasslands are rich with flowers and provide important habitats for insects and bird species. Providing this area of open space, with access through Stapleford Down retirement village would allow the whole community to connect with nature.

The residents of the retirement village and wider community would benefit from being able to access this new space from their doorstep for recreation such as walking, running, and community events as well as enjoying the health benefits of exercising and fresh air.



Wider Community Benefits

You may wish to live in the proposed retirement village, but even if you don’t, there are many wider benefits from a retirement village being built locally including the potential to:

Address local housing need;

By creating smaller homes for ‘right sizers’ to move into, significant numbers of under-occupied 3 & 4 bedroom homes are released back onto the market creating opportunities to address the current shortage of homes locally1 of which there is an identified shortage within Stapleford2.

Support the local economy;

Supporting local services and facilities, with a significant new pool of regular customers which improves sustainability of local shops, pharmacies, public transport, libraries and other leisure and education services in Stapleford and Great Shelford

Jobs are created; retirement villages contribute significantly as direct employers in their local communities.

Enhance quality of life;

Creating social interaction between residents and the local community by delivering a country park not currently accessible to the local community and accessible onsite facilities*.

1 The Economic, Social and Environmental Impact Assessment of a Typical Retirement Village, 2017, English Villages.
2 Housing Statistical Information Leaflet’, South Cambridgeshire District Council, October 2016
*Exact range and availability subject to the selection of a preferred retirement village operator


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