Consultation on the Druitt Gardens Landscape Master Plan.

The brief for the landscape  Masterplan is centred on three aims:

  • To address the concerns and aspirations highlighted in the 2005 'Town Centre Strategy' and 'Borough-wide Character Assessment' for Christchurch
  • To fulfil the desires of Miss Charlotte Druitt when she gifted her house and gardens to the public in 1946
  • To incorporate the management objectives set out in the approved Christchurch Borough Council document 'Druitt Gardens - A Town Centre Woodland - Draft Management Plan 2007-2010'

The key proposals of the Master Plan include:

  • The laying out of a new footpath network including shared surfaces for use by both pedestrians and cyclists
  • Felling 65 'unsafe' trees (includes new Community Centre site) but with the retention of some tree stumps to help with new habitat creation
  • Felling 25 other trees to achieve Master Plan objectives
  • Tree Surgery to seven trees recommended for felling but to be retained for habitat and aesthetic reasons
  • The retention of 200 existing trees some of which may require tree surgery
  • Planting 86 new large native trees (4.5 - 6m high at planting)
  • Planting 750 new native trees (40 - 80 cm high transplants)
  • Planting approx. 2000 new shrubs
  • Planting new Hawthorn based mixed native hedging to boundaries
  • Planting areas of new amenity grass and species rich grassland
  • New directional signage
  • The creation of focal points, gateway features and seating areas
  • The creation of a new lighting scheme to include bollard lighting, LED and feature lighting
  • The creation of interpretation panels and other features to tell the Druitt Gardens story
  • The creation of interpretation features to tell the historic story of the area
  • The creation of areas of public art and sculpture

Public consultation - completed February 2009

The Druitt Guardians, a 'Friends' group of the Gardens, have been overseeing the work of Landscape Architect Hilary Martin, in preparing a Landscape Master Plan for the Gardens, over the past year. At its meeting on 17 September, the Guardians resolved that the Master Plan had reached a stage that it should be circulated for wider public consultation. The Council's Community Services Committee, at its meeting on 18 November, resolved to publish the Master Plan for public consultation, for a period of six weeks, commencing Monday 12 January and finishing on Friday 20 February 2009. The Guardians held a 'drop-in' day at the Gardens on Saturday 24 January where they and Hilary explained the proposals.

The preparation of the Master Plan and its accompanying background studies are designed to make a significant improvement to the local environment and to the character of the Town Centre Conservation Area. It forms part of an on-going process leading from the preparation of the Town Centre Strategy, the Borough-wide Character Assessment and the Planning Framework to the eventual physical improvement of this important town centre space. The improvement of the Gardens will bring with it indirect economic benefits to adjacent businesses, improved pedestrian and cycling linkages, improved access and mobility in and around the Gardens, making them a safer and more pleasant place to visit. The creation of new improved habitat will increase bio-diversity while archaeological studies and investigations will help identify and interpret local history.

Copies of the Landscape Master Plan Report, its accompanying background studies and the Master Plan itself, can be found at:

  • The Civic Offices, Bridge Street
  • Christchurch Druitt Library, High Street
  • Highcliffe Library, Gordon Road
  • Christchurch Information Centre, High Street

The Master Plan and associated documents:

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