Frequently Asked Questions     (06.07.16)

Southborough Hub Consultation Feedback – You said we did    (13.05.16)

Community Hub Draft Plans    (12.07.16)

Press Release

13 March 2017

Work starts on clearing site for Southborough hub

Site clearance has begun for the Southborough Hub development with preparation works for the demolition of the council offices at 137 London Road and the Royal Victoria Hall, which is expected to start in the next two weeks.

Southborough Town Council is being re-located to Tunbridge Wells Borough Council offices during the re-development process.

Having already purchased a derelict site owned by Tesco, KCC has now also bought the back plot of the Lloyds building which finalises the land amalgamation needed to deliver the scheme. The project has appointed Bracketts Estate Agents to start marketing the enabling housing development and to date it is attracting a good level of interest.

The hub will provide enhanced community facilities for the benefit of local residents and businesses while helping to regenerate part of the town centre. It will house a new community hall / theatre space, town council offices, library and a café / bar. In addition it will include a pavilion for the use of the Ridgewaye Football Club using the adjoining football pitches.

Working closely with the FA and Sport England the project is seeking to apply for up to £500k grant funding from the FA foundation towards the new pavilion. This would enable the second floor of the pavilion to be built and is anticipated to greatly enhance the club’s viability.

There will also be a new building for the St Andrew’s Medical Centre, which will be relocating from its premises in St Andrews Court.

The hub has been a long-standing aspiration of Southborough Town Council and is being progressed in partnership with the borough and county councils, with all three authorities contributing their land-holdings on the site.

The derelict plot which KCC bought from Tesco and which had been boarded up for over a decade will create the new frontage to the development. The supermarket giant previously wanted to build a new store on the 0.18 acre site, which was formerly the home of the Bell Inn, but sold it to KCC as part of the Southborough Hub project.

An eight-week consultation for residents on the plans was carried out a little over a year ago. The majority of people who responded to the consultation overwhelmingly endorsed the need for the development and most also voted for a completely new building.

The project is being part-funded by the sale of adjoining land for residential and commercial development, with the relevant land currently on the open market.

County and Town councillor Peter Oakford, who continues to play a major role in progressing the hub project, said: “After years of talks, arguments, decisions and planning, we have reached a key point in the provision of this fantastic new facility which will create a vibrant town centre for the people of Southborough.

“At last we will be able to see some physical progress being made and I would like to thank the teams form all three local authorities who have brought us to this point.

“The town’s community facilities are currently in a poor state of repair and the hub will ensure that these are enhanced and sustained for the future. I look forward to the day when the hub is open for business and residents can start using the various services based there.”

Mike Hill, KCC’s Cabinet Member for Community Services, said: “I am delighted to see this project come to fruition after so much hard work and effective collaboration between three local authorities. I am sure it will be a much-appreciated facility for the residents of Southborough.”

The Town Council offices are housed in a dated residential building, which is in a poor state of repair and many residents with disabilities are unable to access it.

The Royal Victoria Hall was also in a poor state of repair and in need of significant financial investment. It was closed following scheduled maintenance which identified a requirement for further assessments and surveys as well as an insurance issue. 

Demolition of both buildings is expected to take about eight weeks.

The library is currently located in a separate building on Yew Tree Road, and locating it in the Southborough Hub will allow customers to access more services from one building. Incorporating the service in the Hub will ensure that future generations in Southborough can continue to benefit from a thriving library and access to a range of other services all in the same place.

The library will only move to the Southborough hub building when this is complete, meaning the current library will stay open until it is time to move. No decision has been made on what will happen to the old library site.

The Football Pavilion is proposed to be next to the main development in order to encourage a vibrant town centre and ensure greater use of the adjacent and expanded Yew Tree Road car park. It is hoped that doing so and working with the football club the scheme will look to alleviate car parking issues at weekends around Yew Tree Road, Ridgewaye, and nearby streets.

Jonathan White
Projects and Operations Manager
2nd Floor Invicta House
Maidstone
ME14 1XX

03000 417198
07988 375334

Jonathan.white@kent.gov.uk

 

Southborough Community Hub Development Consultation Analysis Report

Following the Consultation on the development of the Southborough Hub, the results were analysed by an independent Company.

To view their report, please click on the link. Southborough Hub Consultation Report

 

Equality Impact Assessment

To see the latest update click the link.

 

Please note – Minutes can only be added below, when approval has been given, at the following meeting.

Redacted minutes of the Southborough Hub Project Board Meetings – It is necessary to take out any commercially sensitive information.

29.06.2015          05.08.2015         09.09.2015         05.11.2015          19.01.2016 

01.03.2016          04.04.2016         05.05.2016         07.07.2016          21.07.2016

06.10.2016          07.12.2016         24.01.2017         13.03.2017

Redacted minutes of the Southborough Hub Working Group Meetings – It is necessary to take out any commercially sensitive information.

04.09.2013          04.11.2013          13.12.2013          04.04.2014          03.06 2014        

02.09.2014          30.09.2014          02.12.2014          06.01.2015          03.03.2015          

28.04.2015          02.06 2015          14.07.2015          01.09.2015          06.10.2015

03.11.2015          01.12.2015          05.02.2016          01.03.2016          05.04.2016

06.05.2016          07.06.2016          07.07.2016          02.08.2016          02.09.2016

05.10.2016          02.11.2016           02.12.2016         10.01.2017          02.02.2017

03.03.2017          04.04.2017 d

Collaboration Agreement (signed 04.07.2016)

Southborough Community Hub – Viability Presentation (03.10.14)

Draft Business Plan (24.04.17)

Risk Assessment (03.04.17)