Work underway on Leicestershire's first 'garden village' - and it includes Hollywood-style sign

View of Broadnook Garden Village development
The first residents are expected later this year -Credit:S17 Photography

Work on Leicestershire’s first ‘garden village’ with almost 2,000 homes has begun. A "Hollywood-style" sign bearing the development's name, Broadnook, has been erected as part of the work.

Broadnook Garden Village will sit on land between Birstall and Rothley and will ultimately encompass 1,950 homes, employment land, a village centre and supermarket. The major development will also see a primary school, retirement village, GP surgery, sports facilities and allotments.

The "Hollywood-style" steel name sign is 9ft tall and "will turn a beautiful burnt orange with age, and is a symbol of a grand beginning for this new village location at the heart of Charnwood", a spokesperson for the development said. They added that Broadnook would "be far from being style over substance", and would "offer outstanding modern amenities that any thriving village community needs".

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Broadnook will feature 1,950 homes, a new school, supermarket and roundabout links to Rothley -Credit:Charnwood Borough Council

Broadnook Garden Village takes its name from the ancient spinney which runs through the site, just off the A6, and promises “leafy tree lined walks” in a nod to Leicester’s New Walk. Developers said more than half of the site would be devoted to green spaces, with "future residents also able to enjoy car-free zones to allow them to move freely and safely", the spokesperson said. Homes on the development will range from one-bedroomed to five-bedroomed properties, they added.

The spokesperson said Broadnook’s chief architects had "carefully designed the garden village to enhance this beautiful and highly desirable part of Charnwood". They added that, "residents will be able to enjoy being part of a modern community that subscribes to the ethos of connecting neighbourhoods with their natural surroundings".

"The village centre and amenities will, it is hoped, minimise the need for unnecessary use of a car within the Broadnook village," said the spokesperson. "For longer journeys, Broadnook Garden Village is exceptionally situated for transport links, with fast, easy access to nearby towns and cities. Leicester, Loughborough and Nottingham are reached swiftly by road and bus, and excellent train links bring London to your doorstep in around 70 minutes. East Midlands Airport is also just a short ride away by car, or the speedy 24-hour, skylink shuttle bus service. Broadnook is, of course, on the cusp of the historic National Forest of Charnwood offering gorgeous woodland and breathtaking landscapes that can be enjoyed on foot or bicycle."

Mayor of Charnwood Councillor Margaret Smidowicz said: “The launch of Broadnook Garden Village is a defining moment for the Borough of Charnwood as it celebrates its 50th anniversary. This thoughtful, innovative design offers a sense of ‘place’, encapsulating the heritage of the surrounding area but considers the long-term future for the new community as it develops. I recall the many consultation meetings and I am genuinely delighted and privileged to be part of this special occasion, which will prove to be an investment that provides more than simply houses."

Sign of the word Broadnook at new garden village development
The Broadnook sign will rust to a 'beautiful' burnt orange according to developers -Credit:S17 Photography

Iain Pickering, design director at Davidsons Homes and described as the "mastermind behind the reinvention of the Broadnook Garden Village concept", said: “We are creating Broadnook Garden Village without losing sight of how we all want to live: as part of a thriving community that feels modern and connected, yet firmly rooted in the beautiful nature that we are lucky enough to enjoy in Charnwood.

“We have taken many of our design cues from the local Leicestershire landscape: our street signs take inspiration from our neighbours at Great Central Railway; our architecture takes careful reference from the beautiful, period house styles seen in Rothley, Quorn and Barrow upon Soar. Our tree lined walk, which is an integral element of our design, passes a nod to Leicester’s historic New Walk. Broadnook is firmly – and proudly – Leicestershire born and bred.”

The project is "backed by an investment of £32.6 million – of which over £17 million is being invested into local schools", the spokesperson said. The first residents are expected this autumn.