The ultimate aspiration of Sutton Council is that Hackbridge should become a One Planet suburb by 2025.
The intention is that project interventions across all of the One Planet Living principles are “piloted” in Hackbridge and, on the basis of lessons learnt, successful interventions are rolled out across the rest of the borough. All the key stakeholders – residents, community groups, businesses and Sutton Council – are committed to making Hackbridge the UK’s first truly sustainable suburb, a place where people are able to lead happy, healthy lives within their fair share of the earth’s resources, and where local businesses thrive.’
If the Vision of One Planet Sutton is to be realised through the pilot project at Hackbridge and the activities of other partners, the Council needs to adopt an innovative and creative way of working – it cannot rely on its regulatory functions alone, nor is it feasible for Sutton to fund the required activity. The Council therefore needs to show community leadership and utilise its influencing and negotiation skills to extract maximum leverage from the engagement, partnership and resources of others.
Following a successful bid by the council in 2011, Hackbridge was selected as one of the original 17 communities across the country to act as a ‘front runner’ for neighbourhood planning and following a number of meetings with the Hackbridge community, including residents, representatives from schools, local businesses, Councillors and BioRegional, a Hackbridge and Beddington Corner Neighbourhood Development Plan Steering Group was established in order to shape the development of the area for the benefit of local people and to lead the local community in shaping future developments.
You can get involved in making shaping your neighbourhood by joining the Hackbridge and Beddington Corner Neighbourhood Development Group.
In January 2012 the council was awarded funding from the Mayor’s Outer London Fund to deliver public realm improvements and measures to support economic growth and vitality within the local community. For further information on Hackbridge public realm improvements go to Heart of Hackbridge on the Sutton Council website.
One of the aims of the public realm improvements was to create a sense of a shared space by incorporating widened pavements within the design to create an environment that would encourage residents and visitors to stop and spend some time in the area, rather than using it as a route to get to some other place.
As a result of the widened pavements, the London Borough of Sutton piloted a Farmers’ Market in June 2014 which attracted both residents and visitors to the area. The pilot project proved to be very popular to those who visited the market, with feedback suggesting that they would like to see the market repeated.
Three Dr Bike Sessions have also been held in Hackbridge. These have proved to be very popular with families, who were able to receive free maintenance and security checks for their bikes.
Other projects that have been successfully delivered include:
- The restoration to the River Wandle at Culvers Island to improve the biodiversity and habitat of the River.
- Improvements to Hackbridge Station, including landscaping at platform 2.
- Implementation of the Mile Road Pocket Park.