AFL Architects | Penwortham Mills
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Penwortham Mills

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The detailed masterplan and phased delivery proposals for a 19.89Ha site in Penwortham, approximately 1.5km to the south of Preston City Centre.

The final development will provide up to 330 new, high-quality 1, 2, 3 and 4 bedroomed, mixed-tenure homes, plus retail amenity, enhanced connections and significant public open space to benefit the local community.

A joint commission between our masterplanning and architectural teams, the project also included the design of 17 house types for Trafford Housing Trust and a new supermarket.

new homes
affordable housing
new house types

Each of the three phases of Penwortham Mills have a distinctive identity.

The proposals outline a gradual, phased delivery of the site. Together with the careful selection of housing mix and tenure, this approach will complement and contribute positively to the development of a sustainable, mixed and balanced wider community.

The phases are:

  • Phase 1 – 117 new homes and a new retail store at the larger eastern section of the site, and 29 new homes at the western Sumpter Horse Pub site, connected by landscape corridors.
  • Phase 2 – 105 new homes at the central and northern section of the main eastern part of the site
  • Phase 3 – 71 new homes at the site of former Penwortham Mill buildings in the north-eastern part of the site

The Sumpter Horse Pub site, part of the detailed Phase 1 proposals, will deliver 100% affordable housing. Some homes will also be targeted at the older community, working in conjunction with South Ribble Borough Council.

The masterplan vision is to create sustainable, walkable and characterful neighbourhoods.

Currently a mixture of undeveloped and derelict, former industrial land, the site presents several topographical and ecological opportunities. The street layout and block structure respond to the contrasting characteristics of the existing Lake Wood Reservoir and wooded stream valley. The optimal arrangement and inter-relation of buildings along this outline provides new connections and frames views to these valuable amenities.

By retaining and enhancing existing landscape features within a sustainable series of linked spaces, new neighbourhoods can be structured. Residential development is designed to vary across the site, creating differing and complementary street types, landscape edges and character areas that respond to the underlying features of the site and established placemaking principles.

The proposals sensitively incorporate 3.48Ha of high-quality public amenity, connected with new pedestrian and cycle routes.

Opportunities for ecological enhancement are identified and catalysed throughout the new connective public open space components and green infrastructure throughout the masterplan. These include a proposed western stream wooded corridor and a western open space spur to Leyland Road. Primarily, the focus is on extending and enhancing non-vehicular access throughout the site.

The existing Lake Wood Reservoir will be improved through new public walkways, routes and seating. Proposals will connect this body of water to the Old Tramway National Cycle Route. Improved access will ensure better management of this asset, encourage biodiversity and provide facilities for educational activities in the long term.

AFL Penwortham site street scenes

New homes are designed to reference the local architectural language within modern, well-proportioned housing.

The new range comprises 17 house types, including apartments, bungalows, terraced, semi-detached and detached homes, from 1-bedroom to 4-bedrooms in size. This mix aims to strike a balance between meeting the housing needs of the existing local community and providing a wider choice of aspirational housing for attracting new residents to the area. Once established, the residents will be able to move to a new house within their neighbourhood as their needs change over the years.

The development proposal allows for 50% of new homes to be delivered on the site to be affordable, split between affordable rent and shared ownership. House types proposed for affordable housing provision comprise five different arrangements, from 2 bed bungalows to 3-bed semi-detached homes. This housing has been designed and distributed within the masterplan to be ‘tenure blind’: as indistinguishable in architectural character and quality of materials from the open market housing.


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