Here We Go Again

From the Architect’s Journal 26th June 2018

Tendring District Council is recruiting a design team to re-masterplan the 90ha ‘plotlands’ settlement of Jaywick Sands in Essex

The winner of the estimated £80,000 contract will create a ‘bold and innovative’ development framework for the coastal village near Clacton, which was constructed in the 1930s as low-cost holiday homes but is now one of the UK’s most deprived areas.

The project aims to transform the low-lying Brooklands and Grasslands area – which suffers from the highest risk of flooding in the country – by introducing high-quality, flood-resilient homes as well as new tourism facilities and employment opportunities for local residents.

In its brief, the council says it is looking for ‘ambitious but solidly realistic guidance which will deliver the regeneration desperately needed for the area and will enable development at Jaywick Sands to be underway quickly.

‘Much of the site, including existing residential development, is within an area at high risk of flooding. It has already been accepted that regeneration of the area presents an opportunity to improve the safety of existing residents. The agreed approach is to allow new development, including new dwellings, in the area and to manage risk from flooding through bespoke building design rather than by resisting development as a standard sequential test would do.’

Jaywick Sands was constructed on a large area of coastal marshland south of Clacton in the 1930s as low-cost holiday homes for east Londoners. The ‘plotlands’ development allowed families to cheaply purchase a site and self-build their chalets.

Following the Second World War, many families relocated permanently to the area due to bomb damage and housing shortages in the capital, but the settlement lacked the infrastructure required for dense, long-term habitation.

Today Jaywick Sands suffers from many social and economic problems along with flood risk. The latest development framework aims to transform the area into a ‘sustainable community’ with opportunities for local residents.

Key proposals include introducing new private market dwellings, social housing, and extra care units along with self-build plots and new commercial, community and leisure uses. Once completed, the development framework is expected to be adopted as a supplementary planning guidance for the area.

The deadline for applications is 30 July.

I’ve no doubt that it will come back with the usual response of demolishing most if not all of Brooklands which will once again go down like a lead balloon. The problem is and probably always will be that most of the residents have no real qualms about living in what are laughing referred to as undersized and unfit properties. Especially when you look at the size of some of the new builds.

At the end of the day, it boils down to the fact that most of the residents of Jaywick Sands who choose to live there and have done so for many years have no trust whatsoever in TDC given the number of broken promises made by them and their predecessors CUDC over the years. This is probably the biggest chasm between the Jaywick Sands and TDC and in fact any outside group. Until such time as some sort of trust can be established that will almost certainly continue to be the case. I honestly believe that TDC thought the construction of the 10 new homes in Lotus Way would bring about some sort of dialogue that could be pursued because it could have been fairly quick. But the delays due in no small part to Essex Wildlife and Archaeology have done nothing to help that process.

This entry was posted in Jaywick. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.