Letter to TTC Regarding Tenterden Recreation Ground Proposal
Further to the informative and well-presented recent exhibition on the Tenterden Regeneration Projects, the TDRA Committee wanted to raise the following points:
Tenterden Recreation Ground Proposal
- Having discussed the proposal with Tom Carlton a local coach who I believe has been involved with the Focus Group, he expressed concern that there is no hut within or immediately adjacent to the tennis court enclosure – for toilet/ change/ storage facilities that would be expected of a tennis club. He would not be comfortable with children using the Leisure Centre facilities as they would be unsupervised and out of his immediate area of supervision. Therefore we would like this to be added to the proposal to make a ‘Tennis Club’ a viable option.
- There will be extensive unsightly fencing as a result of all the new courts as shown on the visuals, we request that perimeter hedging (perhaps with some gapping to allow for visual breaks) is added at least to the tennis court enclosure to mitigate this and as added (natural) protection against wind. There has recently been an issue at Biddenden Tennis courts with wind as a result of the Council removing an established hedge to accommodate a mobile mast.
- The side elevation to the Tenterden Leisure Centre (TLC) is unsightly and the removal of the berm will allow this to be far more apparent, we request that high level planted screening is added to mitigate this, this will also help with wind management on the tennis courts. Perhaps this would be an ideal location for a living wall to be installed – a positive proposal for increasing wildlife habitat and biodiversity.
- We also feel that an opportunity for integrating Tenterden Leisure Centre more with the proposals has been missed. We would expect the opening up of the TLC facing elevation to allow direct entry to facilities including the café to be included. Increasing the presence of the café with fenestration to directly accessible internal seating area as well as outside seating areas would surely be sensible.
- In light of public interest and support for sustainable development, optimising opportunities for using eco-friendly building materials and ensuring biodiversity net gain, we request that all interstitial green space is planted with this in mind, using as many pollinator friendly, native species as possible and as much wilding as possible. We would expect potential for wildlife habitat to be increased via such things as mammal and amphibian boxes; nest and insect boxes. In addition, we would expect the use of natural materials for hard surfaces and equipment where possible.
- We note that the proposal appears to suggest a timber clad façade system to the Youth Hub, we would suggest that a more durable and long lasting construction is considered as timber even when treated requires a relatively higher level of maintenance and does not often weather well in wet/ damp climates. We also request that alternate materials are vernacular, such as brick; tile etc – particularly with respect to the vicinity of the Tenterden Conservation Area, this should not in our opinion preclude sensitive, high quality contemporary design however.
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