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Beaulieu Keep development wins top award

A housing scheme within the Beaulieu development has been named a winner in a top national award scheme.  

Beaulieu Keep (Photo Credit Timothy Soar)
Photo credit: Timothy Soar

Beaulieu Keep has been crowned a winner in the 2022 Housing Design Awards. This marks a second win in a row for new homes within Chelmsford Garden Community, with the Channels development winning in 2021. 

The Beaulieu Keep and Channels neighbourhoods are part of the Chelmsford Garden Community. The location and masterplanning of this development was guided by Chelmsford’s Local Plan

Over 1,700 homes have already been built with a combination of housing options, including affordable housing. These innovative developments are providing much-needed homes for families, single households and first-time buyers.

‘Outstanding’ design 

Beaulieu Keep was cited as an outstanding development and an is an example of how family-friendly design can enhance community wellbeing and offer a mix of housing options.  

Winners of this prestigious award represent the very best examples of new housing in the UK. They demonstrate how architects, developers and local authorities are working together to create exceptional places for people to live in. 

The scheme was designed by Architects TateHindle, with input from the City Council’s planning team, for developers  Countryside Zest. 

"I congratulate everyone involved in this scheme for this wonderful accolade. It’s an example of how the City Council works with partners on innovative design to create sustainable communities that people want to live in.

Attaining a top award twice in two years for a development in Chelmsford is an outstanding achievement and I want to thank our planning team for bringing their expertise to these projects."

Cllr Mike Mackrory, Cabinet Member for Sustainable Development

Beaulieu Keep is a sustainable community  

Beaulieu Keep is an inclusive and sustainable community in Chelmsford. It contains 321 spacious homes that integrate into the Beaulieu masterplan of 3,600 houses, new schools for ages 2 to 18, and a forthcoming rail station. 

Set within the ancient parkland of Henry VIII’s Tudor palace, the design responds to the local character of barns and farmsteads in the Essex countryside.  

Judges noted that Beaulieu Keep positively promotes active travel and family living. It centres around walkable neighbourhoods that give priority to pedestrians. This includes dedicated cycle routes and community parks, which have all been woven into the housing design to maximise views and connect people.  

"Each year, the judges visit a diverse range of schemes and what really stood out about Beaulieu Keep was that it’s a place the judges would want their own families to live in.

Located in Chelmsford within Henry VIII’s palace estate, this historic site now hosts a thriving community where car ownership is no longer a necessity. Planning theorists talk about the 15 minute city commute and this is the first ever new build that achieves just that."

David Birkbeck, chief executive of Design for Homes and co-ordinator of the Housing Design Awards

Prestigious housing design award 

The annual Housing Design Awards recognise the very best in housing design. They are acknowledged as the most important and highly regarded awards for housing in the UK.

They are highly sought after by architects and developers. The awards are supported by organisations including Homes England, as well as professional institutions including the RIBA, RICS, RTPI and the Landscape Institute. 

As well as pioneering schemes that encourage healthy lifestyles, promote neighbourliness and support everyday family life, this year’s Housing Design Awards winners include urgent responses to the current housing shortage and fuel crisis. This is together with exemplary examples of building with nature and celebrating the UK’s industrial heritage.  

For more information, please see the Housing Design Awards website.

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Charlotte Maltby
Charlotte Maltby

Charlotte writes about the environment, parks, recycling, business, planning, public realm and democratic services.