Chapter 10

Blakeney

Introduction
10.1 Blakeney is a large village situated on the A.48, about 5 kilometres from Lydney. It lies on the lower slopes of the Severn escarpment. The land rises steeply around the northern and western edges. To the east it trails off through an undulating landscape to the nearby River Severn. The village has taken on a linear character as it has developed alongside the A.48, with two other ribbons of development following Mill Lane and Awre Road. In recent years two local authority housing estates have been built on rising ground to the west and north and 28 houses on land at Millend. Blakeney lies just outside the statutory Forest.
10.2 The village has a long history, and by the thirteenth century was a centre for iron smelting. An important period of growth which took place in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries left a legacy of particularly fine buildings in the centre of Blakeney, they now form the core of the designated Conservation Area.
10.3 Blakeney acts as a local service centre, offering a range of shops and other facilities. These include a school, doctors' surgery, extensive recreation ground, hall and two churches, two public houses and a social club within the village itself. The position of the village on a principal road adds to the viability of some of these services. There are no major employers in or adjoining Blakeney, although there are quite a large number of small businesses providing local employment including the area of the old Goods Station where there may be some opportunity for the further intensification of this use. The village derives some income from tourism.
10.4 The population of Awre Parish declined considerably between 1951 and 1981. This trend has been reversed as a result of increased house building in Blakeney and it is likely that the village population grew quite significantly as a result of these completions. The village population is estimated as 712 at 1999 with a housing stock of 272 dwellings. There were outstanding planning consents for 3 dwellings on January 1st, 2000.
Development Strategy
10.5 Blakeney is surrounded by attractive countryside, especially to the north and west of the village. The Plan strategy allows for some residential development in the form of infilling and small groups of dwellings and single dwellings within the defined settlement boundary, which has been drawn to follow closely the present extent of the built up area of Blakeney. However little change is expected to take place over the Plan period as there are few opportunities remaining for further development within the village. Incursions into the surrounding countryside will be resisted.
10.6 A number of important open areas have been identified within Blakeney. These include the recreation ground, together with other areas which contribute significantly to local amenity and should be protected from development.
Built Environment
10.7 The central part of Blakeney is a designated Conservation Area, with many fine examples of individual and groups of buildings. The High Street and Church Square area contain a particularly fine group of buildings which together form a most interesting and impressive townscape. Any new development in the Conservation Area would be expected to complement and enhance the built environment. Archaeological assessments may be required to accompany development applications.
10.8 Within the Conservation Area and along the line of the main road there are a number of individual buildings and sites where localised improvements would be very beneficial to the overall appearance of the village. There may be opportunities for such improvements arising from the redevelopment of existing sites. Where these occur the Plan strategy will seek to ensure that appropriate environmental improvements are incorporated. Implementation would require the co-operation of property owners and other bodies. A successful programme would enhance the centre of Blakeney, support local services, and possibly enhance the potential for tourism.
Employment
Former Goods Station

 

 

(R)F.Blakeney 1 (Old Railway Line)

0.3 hectares of land will be allocated for B1 employment use, or the intensification of the existing uses. Proposals for development other than employment uses will not be permitted.

10.9 (R)F.Blakeney 1 identifies a site of approximately 0.3 hectare, which has permission for B1 employment use. It was originally a railway goods yard and has good natural screening. The site offers the potential for further development for employment uses without becoming intrusive. It is not suitable for uses generating large volumes of additional traffic because of the restricted vehicular access. The site will be safeguarded for employment uses to provide for local jobs.
Traffic
10.10 Throughout the village there is a need to address the impact of through traffic. Some traffic management measures have already been implemented to reduce the present impact of the A.48 as it carries a considerable volume of traffic. The County Council will continue to monitor the situation.

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Forest of Dean District Local Plan Review, 1st Deposit Draft. July 2000


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