Mayfield Community and Health Centre – Project Update September 2020

Following the good news in the August update we can now report a number of further positive developments:

Fields in Trust

Many will be aware of the confused legal situation as to whether Court Meadow was ever formally registered as a King George V playing field back in 1939. Notwithstanding this lack of legal clarity there was a clear desire of the parish at the time to preserve Court Meadow for recreational purposes in perpetuity, nor does anyone today wish to see the playing area sold for housing.

Hence, with regard to the current replacement hall and the construction of a combined community and health centre, the parish council has endeavoured to reach a mutually acceptable agreement with Fields in Trust (who these days administer King George V playing fields). We are pleased to report that Fields in Trust and the parish council have agreed to an arrangement whereby:

  1. The existing grass recreational area in Court Meadow, comprising some 11 acres, is put into the Fields in Trust protection scheme via a new Deed of Declaration
  2. Jubilee Wood, which is land owned by the parish council comprising a further 2 acres of woodland, is also to be protected via a second Deed of Declaration
  3. The 2 acre ‘brownfield’ area occupied by the existing hall and car parks etc will in future fall outside of the remit of Fields in Trust and hence their permission and any involvement in the building of a new community and health centre on this parcel of land is not required.

This agreement removes all the project impediments with regards to KGV and Fields in Trust.

NHS Clinical Commissioning Group

Wealden District Council is fully funding the health centre element of the project but for them to do this they required a commitment from the local NHS Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) that they will support the GP practice in Mayfield for 25 years.

This agreement has now been forthcoming and hence a further hurdle has been overcome.

Wealden District Council

Given the above WDC is now in a position to enter into detailed discussions with the parish council to agree a Heads of Terms document (which defines the governance and working arrangements between the parties) and the Architect’s brief – which defines the requirements to which the selected architect will be working.

Once the key documents are agreed in principle with WDC they will be ratified by the parish council, hopefully at its September 2020 full council meeting. Following this an architect can be appointed who will be charged with recommending some design options covering precise location, internal layout, massing of the building and aesthetic look, together with estimated costs of each option. These options will be presented to the parish at a second public consultation which will take place early in 2021 and the village can decide on their preferred option.

Once the village has made its decision on a design option the architect will develop detailed plans, apply for planning permission, and then the building contract can be awarded.