The application is being brought forward in response to a shortage of large-scale sites suitable for logistics and distribution in the area, and to provide a new premises for Hinckley-based technology and automotive supply chain business, Syncreon.
The plans include a mix of employment units, suitable for a range of occupiers across the logistics and manufacturing sectors. Externally, a new area of community green space will be delivered to boost the ecological value of the site and deliver community amenities. We would like to hear your views on what this green space should be used for, so please visit the ‘your feedback’ page on this website.
The development proposals will include an improvement scheme to increase the height clearance of the existing A5 Watling Street railway bridge by lowering the carriageway. This bridge is struck on average once a fortnight, causing significant congestion and disruption road users on this key local and strategic route. This improvement scheme will provide a definitive solution to the frequent bridge strikes, freeing up congestion along this stretch of the A5.
Before we submit a hybrid planning application for land south of Hinckley, we want to understand what the local community thinks about our scheme.
We want your feedback to help shape our plans and tailor these proposals to local needs. Visit the feedback page or click below to complete our feedback form.
The proposals are being promoted by Mountpark Logistics, a privately owned property development and investment company. Mountpark has a proven track record in delivery high quality logistics campus developments across the UK and Europe.
We are committed reducing the environmental impact of our developments. Our buildings are designed and constructed to achieve a minimum BREEAM ‘very good’ accreditation. But, where possible, we look to go above and beyond to hit carbon neutrality. For example, we will use renewable energy, including solar panels, in our development at land south of Hinckley. You can read more at www.mountpark.com/responsible-development
This hybrid application includes detailed plans for a 55,742 sq.m unit that has been designed specifically for the operational needs of Syncreon, a Hinckley-based supplier of parts to the automotive and technology industries.
Syncreon is looking to increase its operating capacity locally and, to do so, requires new high quality employment space in the area. Currently Syncreon operates a substantial and successful distribution facility at Sketchley Park. As part of Syncreon’s planned expansion, the company requires a larger local headquarters. If approved, these plans will allow Syncreon to embark on a long-term programme of growth which could see its permanent local workforce grow from 350 to 800 staff.
Jobs across a range of roles and requiring a range of skills and qualifications would be created, including a notable proportion of ‘office-based’ jobs in the high-quality office accommodation Syncreon will require as part of the new building.
A hybrid planning application will be submitted, which means that the plans will contain a mix of detailed and outline proposals. Plans for a new 55,742 sq.m building, which will be the home of Hinckley-based Syncreon Technology, will be submitted in detail. Alongside this will be outline proposals for up to 78,039 sq.m of B8 (storage and distribution) and B2 (light industrial) employment floorspace. The detail of the outline element of the scheme will be applied for through subsequent reserved matters planning applications before they can be built.
Our plans include a new area of community green space to boost the ecological value of the site and deliver community amenities. We would like to hear your views on what this green space should be used for, so please visit the ‘your feedback’ page on this website.
Use the interactive site masterplan below to learn more about what our plans will deliver.
The site would be accessed via a new traffic signal controlled T-junction on the A5. The access design results from extensive consultation with Highways England and would replace the existing priority controlled T-junction access to the farm. The access junction would provide toucan crossing facilities to improve access to the site for pedestrians and cyclists. The access has been subject to a Stage 1 Road Safety Audit and will ensure safe access with minimal queuing and delay on the A5.
As described above, pedestrians and cyclists will be able to access the site from the new junction on the A5. Further, a shared pedestrian and cycle facility will also be provided between the proposed development and Dodwells roundabout.
Through discussion with the bodies named above, it was agreed to model and assess the likely scale and distribution of development traffic using a strategic transport model. Based on the strategic modelling an ‘area of influence’ for the further assessment of the potential transport impacts of the development has been identified. Much of the work has now been completed and there are active discussions ongoing about a range of local transport issues, including about the likely effects of other development projects nearby, with LCC, WCC and Highways England.
The modelling work undertaken to date concludes that the area of influence of the development is as shown on the Figure opposite. Assessments of the key junctions within this area, including the A47/The Long Shoot and A47/Eastboro Way junctions, have considered the impact of development traffic in greater detail. The results of the work completed show that the proposals would deliver benefits in terms of improved traffic conditions by improving the bridge, and through further improvements at Dodwells roundabout. With these measures in place the impacts of the additional traffic using the site, if approved, would not create significant effects on the A5 or local road network. The Applicant has agreed to do further modelling work in response to the ongoing discussions being held with the County Councils and Highways England, and this will also form part of the application in due course.
While new logistics employment floorspace will inevitably increase the number of vehicles using the local road network, our plans include a series of improvements to the A5 to help traffic flow more freely through the area. In addition, a substantial ‘no build zone’ is identified on key plans and will be protected on site to enable future widening of the A5, should a scheme be approved and delivered in the future. The proposals would not put any new features or development into that zone which might prejudice future widening of the A5.
An improvement scheme is still being developed but is likely to include widening on the B4666 Coventry Road and A5 westbound approaches to provide additional capacity to reduce delay and queueing. The improvement would also provide toucan crossing facilities on the B4666 Coventry Road and A5 westbound arms of the junction.
The exiting A5 Walting Street railway bridge is the most ‘bashed bridge in Britain’. It is struck by over-height HGVs approximately once every two weeks, causing serious disruptions to traffic flow on the A5 and local areas as traffic is diverted. Hence, there is an inherent issue with regards to journey time reliability which can have a major impact on commuters and businesses alike. Therefore, we propose carriageway lowering works be carried out to allow the tallest vehicles to pass safely under the A5 Watling Street Railway Bridge. The existing railway bridge is relatively low at 4.6m in height and there is no turning circle to allow over-height HGVs to turn around once they approach the bridge. It is proposed to increase the clearance to 5.1m by reducing the road levels over a distance of 250m.
This will mean that a source of considerable delays and disruption to commuters and businesses will be removed and the A5 will flow freely. We expect these improvements to have a considerable beneficial impact on journey time reliability for all users of the A5 in Leicestershire and Warwickshire.
Furthermore, vehicles that are higher than 4.6m are currently forced to either reduce their capacity or travel longer distances to avoid this bridge, causing increased vehicle mileage, journey times, and emissions. The works to lower the carriageway will allow all vehicles to pass underneath, resulting in reduced journey times and lower vehicle emissions.
These proposed bridge works will not prejudice the future ability for further significant improvements to the A5 corridor, should a scheme be approved by the A5 partnership or other bodies promoting investment in this key strategic route.
Currently, demand for high-quality logistics employment space in the area is outstripping supply across the Midlands. The sector plays an important role in both the UK and local economy and brings a number of significant benefits both directly to those it employs, as well as more widely. Benefits that our plans for Land South of Hinckley will deliver include:
Syncreon, currently based at Sketchley Park in Hinckley, requires new premises in order to embark on a programme of growth and expand its local workforce considerably. The company needs to be close to both Hinckley and Nuneaton, therefore this site provides the ideal location for Syncreon to expand.
Should Syncreon successfully secure new employment premises at land south of Hinckley, the company is looking to embark on a programme of growth which would increase its local workforce from 350 to 800 staff. The wider site will create between 1,800 and 2,500 jobs once fully occupied, including managerial positions and a range of other skilled roles across IT, engineering and other specialties required by modern logistics operators. Furthermore, whilst salaries can vary by region, the median salary in logistics and distribution is £31,600 compared to a national average of £25,000.
Once fully occupied, new employment floorspace at land south of Hinckley will generate approximately £3.1 million in business rates per year for the Council to support local services, infrastructure and projects. In addition, the finished development could create a yearly boost for the local economy of between £121 million and £157 million.
There is strong market demand for logistics development in the East Midlands and we want to create a new home for innovative businesses across the logistics, warehousing and manufacturing sectors, building on the industrial success of the A5 corridor. This development will provide the type of employment space that local businesses need to grow, which in turn will ensure that jobs and investment remain in the area.
The A5 Watling Street Railway Bridge is one of the top five most struck bridges in the UK and last year, it was struck 27 times – roughly once a fortnight. The impact of these bridge strikes includes an increase in casualties, delays and congestion on the A5 and surrounding local roads. This has a knock-on effect on residents, businesses and the local economy across Hinckley, Nuneaton and the surrounding villages. We propose to increase the clearance to 5.1m by altering the road levels across a 250m stretch to provide an additional 0.5m beneath the bridge. These works will be funded entirely by the development and will negate the need for it to be signed as a low bridge at all.
All vehicles that are higher than 4.6m, which includes many HGVs, are currently forced to either reduce their capacity or travel longer distances to avoid the A5 Watling Street Railway Bridge, causing increased vehicle mileage, journey times, and emissions. The works to lower the carriageway will allow all vehicles to pass underneath, including many HGVs, resulting in reduced journey times and lower vehicle emissions.
A substantial ‘no build zone’ is identified on key plans and will be protected on site to enable future widening of the A5, should a scheme be approved and delivered in the future. The proposals would not put any new features or development into that zone which might prejudice future widening of the A5.
Employers in the logistics sector require sites that are away from town centres and often in more peripheral locations close to the strategic road network where they remain accessible to employees, but will not have significant adverse effects on residential amenity.
Land south of Hinckley is situated off the A5 trunk road, referred to as the A5 corridor, and has excellent connectivity to the motorway network with 90% of the UK’s population accessible within a four-hour drive. The site will be within easy reach of the Daventry International Rail Freight Terminal, Birmingham International Airport and East Midlands Airport which is one of the UK’s busiest for freight.
The success of nearby employment development demonstrates the potential of this site to facilitate further employment opportunities and investment in the local economy.
The proposals include land in three Local Planning Authorities, those being Rugby Borough Council, Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council and Nuneaton & Bedworth Borough Council. Therefore, the planning application will be submitted to all three Council’s and there are three determining authorities, meaning each Council will take a decision on the application. The majority of the development site is in Rugby Borough, but the site relates directly to the town of Hinckley in Hinckley Borough.
Land south of Hinckley is not currently allocated for development by Rugby Borough Council, which is the local authority area in which the majority of the site is located. However, national planning policy states that ‘significant weight’ should be placed on the need to support economic growth and productivity. Furthermore, the A5 corridor has been identified as a key location for further investment in economic growth and infrastructure. Improving the corridor is seen as central to the economy of the Midlands region as a whole, including unlocking and enabling the delivery of sustainable economic and housing growth, and as part of a more resilient transport network. The A5 corridor is referred to in a number of public policy documents including the following:
This illustrates the importance of this location for economic activity, particularly for the logistics and freight industry and its strategic significance for a number of different local authorities and regions.
Workers at Land South of Hinckley will be able to conveniently access the site via a number of public transport options:
The application will include an Environmental Statement (ES) which presents the results of an Environmental Impact Assessment. The ES will identify likely and potential impacts and effects of the proposed development, as well as identifying and recommending mitigation and design measures to minimise or eliminate any significant adverse effects.
The headings below provide details about some of the main environmental topics included in the ongoing Impact Assessment work and which will form chapters within the ES.
Earlier sections of this website provide details about the highways elements of the Proposed Development. A Transport Assessment (TA) has been undertaken to assess the potential impacts on the local highway network, and has used established transport models and data as required by the local highways authorities, and Highways England. The findings of the TA will be reported in the Environmental Statement, as will the role played by a Framework Travel Plan in helping encourage and enable local journeys by a range of sustainable modes of transport.
A ‘no build zone’ is also identified on key plans to enable the future widening of the A5, should a scheme be approved and delivered in future.
The site is not allocated for development, and is currently farmland. However, it is well contained by infrastructure or built development, and is directly influenced by a range of urban features including parts of Hinckley and Nuneaton.
The emerging proposals seek to ensure that an appropriate landscaping scheme is delivered to minimise the visual and landscape effects, and the application will include a Landscape and Visual Assessment which has helped inform the scheme.
The proposed development responds to the context of the site, and the proposed maximum height and position of the built development has been shaped by an assessment of key views from nearby residential and other viewpoints. The Landscape and Visual Assessment considers the likely effects of the scheme, including the retention of generous landscaped buffers, including along the Harrow Brook, and the screening effects of the proposed planting and earthworks. The emerging assessment shows that the most notable likely effects will be limited to the immediate site and a limited number of external viewpoints.
The proposals include significant new earthworks bunding around the edge of the site facing towards Nuneaton to limit and filter views of the site and buildings. With tree and other planting, as well retained trees and hedges, views will be limited to the tops of buildings, and the screening benefit provided by the landscaping will increase over time as the planting matures. In addition to creating a visual buffer, new planting along the western boundary at Harrow Brook will also help to protect and enhance ecology around the Brook.
To view how this landscape buffer will look after 5 and 15 years when viewed from the closest houses on The Long Shoot (A47), click here.
To view a cross section of the site, click here.
The proposed development is on land identified within Flood Zone 1, which is the lowest category of flood-risk where land has a less than 1 in 1,000 annual probability of river (or sea) flooding. Localised areas of higher-risk are associated with Harrow Brook, which forms part of the retained green and habitat areas as part of the proposals, with no built development proposed in those parts of the site.
Despite the low risks, the application is being supported by a Flood Risk Assessment. Also, a surface water drainage strategy will be designed as part of the development proposals to ensure that flood risk from surface water is not increased and to maximise the scheme’s sustainability. The proposals will include new drainage attenuation features (as part of a sustainable drainage system) to store and manage surface water and control its discharge into the local watercourses. Further detail of the drainage scheme will be provided at the Reserved Matters stage if the outline planning application is approved.
The plans include new planting along the western boundary at Harrow Brook, creating a visual buffer when viewed from the west which will also help to protect and enhance ecology around the Brook. Further detail will be provided regarding the new landscaping and additional planting at the detailed design stage.
The Environmental Statement describes how the proposed scheme has been developed to avoid, reduce or mitigate any possible predicted adverse impacts on ecological features and ‘receptors’. The Ecological Assessment chapter describes the existing characteristics of the site in detail and identifies the relatively limited range of habitats on-site. The proposals include a design that incorporates features that maintain habitat connectivity throughout the site for a range of local wildlife. The Assessment describes the range of design and mitigation measures and enhancements proposed to minimise the risk of harm and maximise ecological gains.
The Ecological Assessment chapter refers to how the proposals will include ‘green infrastructure’ including open spaces and habitat creation totalling approx. 23.9 ha, and will deliver a greater range and quality of habitats than is currently present on the site.
The Environmental Statement includes assessments of the potential impacts on both air quality and noise. These assessments summarise the ‘baseline’ conditions on and close to the site, with key findings being that the site is not in an Air Quality Management Area (AQMA), with the closest AQMAs situated within the central area of Nuneaton, approximately 3.3km west of the Site.
The Noise environment of the site is directly influenced by the A5 road, as well as the presence of the railway and proximity to existing urban areas, with relatively high background noise levels seen during the day and night.
For both air quality and noise, a key source of potential impacts will be traffic using the site. The assessments undertaken are based on the traffic data generated by the Transport Assessment modelling and consider air quality and noise issues associated with the construction phase, as well as the operational phase of the proposed development. The assessments focus on the potential impacts on the closest residential communities, as well as other ‘sensitive receptors’ which could include specific habitats or species.
The emerging noise assessment shows that, while there will be some temporary impacts from the construction process, the completed proposals once operational would have negligible effects on noise for all surrounding residential properties due to a combination of the distances between them and the site, as well as the effects of the proposed mitigation measures. The mitigation measures proposed include bunding around the site, which will help to screen noise.
Mountpark’s completed development in Bardon
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