500-home estate could be built on former North Weald golf course with school and more


Developers have launched a call for the redevelopment of a former golf club which would include hundreds of houses, a new retirement home, a school, bus services and shops. If approved by the Town Planning Inspectorate, 555 new homes would be built at the former North Weald Golf Club in Epping Forest.

Claimants Quinn Estates Limited and Redrow appealed for non-determination, which is when a local planning authority does not issue a decision within eight weeks, according to planning documents. According to a design and access statement, the North Weald Park mixed-use development would be “highly sustainable”. One section read: “Our goal is to create a productive and vibrant community where people of all ages will want to work and live.

“This is a program that combines housing with exceptional community, social and economic infrastructure, all in an attractive and accessible landscape.” The application is for hybrid planning permission, which means that some parts of the development would be approved in full, but others would only receive sketchy consent and would require a separate application to be submitted in the future to approve further details.

Read more: Former site of Epping Forest garden center to become homes in green belt

A block permit is requested for the 555 houses, a 70-bed nursing home and an additional 70-bed nursing home, a two-tier primary school, medical facilities, a local shopping center, a sports center including outdoor pitches and a pavilion, a scout hut, offices, a new landscaped park, a bus station car park and road works including a new roundabout on the A414. According to the application, full planning permission is sought for “Phase 1A”, which includes 116 of the total houses, a community centre, road works such as new access to Rayley Lane, parking and associated infrastructure. 40% of homes will be affordable housing, the application continues.

The original hybrid application was submitted to Epping Forest District Council in 2018, but an updated planning statement and other planning documents were submitted in March this year. According to the updated statement, a number of changes have been made since the original request in response to feedback from consultees such as Natural England, including the addition of the national park and park-and-ride bus service.

An acoustic fence near the school was also included, and the school site and sports center were also adjusted to allow for more green space. The North Weald golf course closed in December 2016 as it was no longer financially viable, according to the planning statement. A public inquiry will likely take place later this year.


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