Tenterden Streetscape Masterplan 2007
Tenterden is an outstandingly attractive small Kentish town. Described as the ‘Jewel of the Weald’, the town is comprised of medieval half timbered dwellings, Georgian houses faced with brick tiles and weatherboarding, and commercial buildings of Victorian Stucco and classical revival. This creates an exceptional architectural and townscape environment.
This Tenterden Streetscape Masterplan has been commissioned on behalf of Tenterden Town and Rural Partnership by Ashford Borough Council. Its purpose is to assist the Tenterden community in planning for its future development and in particular the shaping of its streetscape and public realm spaces. It has been developed following the publication of the Tenterden Healthcheck and Action Plan (November 2005), which was financed by the Channel Corridor Partnership and
Kent County Council.
The study, through the Tenterden Improved project, has been carried out with the support of funding from SEEDA, through the Channel Corridor Partnership and Kent Rural Towns Group; the Tenterden Projects Group, Tenterden Town Council and Ashford Borough Council. Amongst other groups who have made a significant contribution are the Tenterden and District Residents Association, Weald of Kent Protection Society and Tenterden and District Chamber of Commerce. The area of the study comprises the core of the conservation area of the town, extending from East Cross along High Street towards West
Cross. It also includes the Recreation Ground, the lanes and secondary roads to the north and south of High Street together with the car park areas.
Format of Report
This document comprises seven sections. Firstly a brief description of overall form and streetscape environment of
the town is given. A summary of the town’s overall streetscape issues are then noted.
A general vision and series of overall principles to guide future development of the town’s streetscape are then proposed.
This is followed by a more in-depth evaluation of the specific components making up the streetscape environment, noting issues and providing guidelines for them. This has been based on an audit of the streetscape furniture. A plan showing the existing street furniture is included within the appendices.
The next section covers proposals for a number of key locations with one area considered in greater detail, together with costed proposals. The concluding section covers priorities, cost implications for these proposals and possible phasing for their implementation.
The townscape qualities of Tenterden have been described and illustrated in Tenterden Explored (1967). This document remains highly topical and consequently has been significantly drawn upon for the following brief description of the town. A more in depth description can be found in that document.
Tenterden is not mentioned in the Doomsday Book but was probably already established by this time centred around a manor house. St Mildred’s Church as the most recognisable link to the distant past can be traced back to at least the 13th Century. The town’s evolution and development since that time has been firmly based on evolving land based uses, commencing with forest clearance, sheep farming, broadcloth manufacturing and hop growing. Its growth and development lagged in the 19th Century behind other similar centres when the main line railway bypassed it in favour of Ashford. Today it functions as a market centre and major tourist destination for its fine ensemble of medieval and Georgian buildings, recreational railway and attractive countryside.
• The Landscape Setting
Tenterden, with St Mildred’s Church at its centre, is sited on a wide topped ridge. This location and the close proximity of open countryside, has resulted in it having a high visual profile within the district.
Tenterden developed as a linear town based around the ridge on which the High Street is now located. While 20th century development has crept away from this traditional tight form, spreading down adjoining slopes, the town remains narrow near St Mildred’s, where the countryside is within 200 metres. In marked contrast, the western part of the High Street opens out into a broad tree-lined thoroughfare and the Greens.
2.0 Tenterden - Jewel of the Weald
3.0 Summary of overall streetscape issues
4.0 Vision and Design Principles
5.0 Streetscape Guidelines
5.1 Surfacing - Footpaths and Kerbs
5.2 Surfacing - Carriageway and Carparks
5.3 Road Markings
5.4 Pedestrian and Visitor Information Signing
5.5 Traffic Signs and Traffic Lights
5.6 Street furniture - Seating
5.7 Street furniture - Lighting and CCTV
5.8 Street furniture - Bollards, Railings and Bicycle Stands
5.9 Street furniture - Litter Bins
5.10 Street furniture - Junction Boxes
5.11 Trees and Planting
5.12 Maintenance - Grassed Surfaces
6.0 Streetscape Proposals
6.1 High Street Central - The Narrows
6.2 High Street Central - Narrows to Greens
6.3 High Street Central - Narrows to Recreation Ground & East Cross
6.4 High Street Fringe - The Greens
6.5 High Street Fringe - East Cross & Recreation Ground
6.6 High Street Fringe- West Cross
6.7 The Lanes and Carparks - Highbury Lane and Carpark
6.8 The Lanes - Bridewell Lane
6.9 The Lanes - Bells/ Jacksons Lane and Six Fields Path
6.10 The Lanes - Sayer’s Lane
6.11 Secondary Streets - Church Road & St Mildred’s
6.12 Secondary Streets and Carparks - Recreation Ground Road and Waitrose Carpark
6.13 Secondary Streets and Carparks - Station Road / Coombe Lane / Museum Carpark
7.0 Phasing, Costing and Partnering Opportunities
8.1 Listed Buildings
8.2 Footways and Lane Connections
8.3 Street Furniture Plan
8.4 Streetscape Materials Palette