West Northamptonshire Development Corporation
|John Markham OBE
The West Northamptonshire Development Corporation (WNDC) is an urban Development Corporation set up to cover parts of Northamptonshire in England, by the United Kingdom government in December 2004. WNDC was set up by the Secretary of State under the provisions of the Local Government Planning and Land Act 1980 and has an explicit objective "to secure the regeneration of its area". The Act provides that it may do so in a number of different ways including making decisions on planning applications. It is one of three existing urban development corporations in the United Kingdom and the only one outside London.
Following the establishment of the new Conservative/Liberal Democrat coalition government in May 2010 the role of WNDC became uncertain following the removal by the new government of the "Regional Spatial Strategy". The positions of West Northants Joint Planning Unit and the North Northants Development Corporation were also uncertain.
In April 2012, the WNDC's planning powers were returned to local councils. The WNDC was subsequently wound up on 31 March 2014.
They have a wide range of powers at their disposal, these powers include:
- Investment - As of July 2010 they have invested over £70 million in the regeneration of Northampton, Daventry and Towcester, with major regeneration schemes happening in all three town centres.
- Planning - WNDC has the power to determine strategic planning applications in its area of operation. From April 2011, the threshold for residential planning applications determined by WNDC will be raised from 50 units to 200 units, with local scale planning powers returning to the local authorities.
- Development - A range of specialist development powers give them the ability to acquire, manage and sell land and property, together with powers to develop, invest and provide business support.
As of July 2010 the Executive Team is -
Peter Mawson - Chief Executive, Roger Mendonca - Deputy Chief Executive, Chris Garden - Director of Regeneration and Development, Adrian Arnold - Director of Planning Services and Bill Allen -Director of Implementation and Delivery
WNDC Board members come from both the public and private sector, representing the needs of local government, the community, and business.
As of July 2010 the board members are -
John Markham (chairman) John Weir, Cllr Sandra Barnes, Mary Burrows MBE, David Dickinson, John Farrow, Cllr Chris Millar, Anne Tate, Nick Thompson, Cllr Anthony Woods, Cllr Richard Church, Cllr Jim Harker, Cllr Joy Capstick.
There are currently a number of projects running in each area -
- The redevelopment of Castle Railway Station
- The regeneration of Northampton's waterside
- £1.4 million to support arts facilities in the town centre and the Royal and Derngate theatre
- £7.4 million to help Northampton boast some of the best flood defences in the United Kingdom
- £10.8 million to resurrect derelict Brownfield land for development
- £6 million to create safer, attractive, more pedestrian friendly streets from the railway through to All Saints Square
- £1.8 million for a new marina in Becket's Park as part of wider waterside development
- Investment in a series of three new roads in the south west of the town
- Investment in the redevelopment of Northampton's famous market square
£9 million has been spent so far kick-starting -
- A doubling of the town's retail and commercial floor space
- The creation of 2,000 new jobs
- £60 million of private investment
- Construction of the landmark iCon centre for sustainable construction
- Provision of a new and improved town centre library
Over £6 million has been invested in Towcester Town Centre helping to support -
- A quality public space in the centre of the town
- New community, leisure and cultural facilities
- The renovation of Bury Mount and the Water Meadows
- New jobs for local people
The iCon is a building in Daventry that is currently under construction as of 2010. The iCon will be a new landmark building for the town. The state-of-the-art scheme will be a national centre of excellence for sustainable construction and green technologies.It will provide accommodation, support and advice for up to 60 businesses. The Centre will also have a conference hall for up to 300 people, as well as a public piazza and a café/restaurant. This £8.5 million project was funded by WNDC, the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and East Midlands Development Agency.
The building has also won a Green Apple Award for the built Environment and Architectural Heritage. The Green Apple Awards, presented by The Green Organisation, are part of an annual international campaign to recognise, reward and promote environmental practice around the world.
- WNDC http://www.wndc.org.uk/about_us.aspx
- WNDC Northampton Quick Facts http://www.wndc.org.uk/whats_happening_in_my_area/northampton/quick_facts.aspx
- WNDC Daventry Quick Facts http://www.wndc.org.uk/projects_in_my_area/daventry/quick_facts.aspx
- WNDC Towcester Quick Facts http://www.wndc.org.uk/projects_in_my_area/towcester/quick_facts.aspx%7C