rory to promote market town vision with the prince’s foundation for building community
Rory will be hosting a visit to Penrith and the Border by design and planning experts from The Prince’s Foundation for Building Community (PFBC), who will be attending the Eden Community Housing Advisory Board’s “Growth and Opportunity” Conference at the Roundthorn Hotel, Penrith on January 18th.
The PFBC has accepted an invitation from Rory to come and talk to conference delegates – drawn from Cumbrian construction industries, housing associations, planning bodies, and local community groups – on the subject of “Penrith and the Border’s Market Towns: a New Approach to Design and Sustainability”, which the local MP hopes will serve to educate and inform attendees about the ways in which urban development can be respectful of traditional architecture and vernacular heritage, particularly that of the unique market towns in his constituency.
The Prince’s Foundation for Building Community – founded by HRH The Prince of Wales in 1987 – is a charity that teaches and demonstrates good practice in issues of sustainable urban and rural development, placing community engagement at the heart of their work. This important presentation will address potential alternative approaches to urban growth and regeneration, and will detail the principles of sustainable urban development espoused by the Prince’s Foundation, looking at built exemplars such as Knockroon in Ayrshire, the Natural House at BRE Innovation Park Watford, and mixed-use sustainable settlements at Poundbury, Coed Darcy and Upton.
Rory said: “PFBC’s philosophy is one that chimes with the many community-led projects that thrive in Penrith and the Border, and I am delighted that they have accepted my invitation to come and present their unique view on Penrith and the Border’s market towns in a specially prepared presentation. This comes at a time when we are literally guiding national policy on housing and planning issues – with the success of Crosby Ravensworth’s affordable housing scheme and Upper Eden’s pioneering Neighbourhood Development Plan – but even so, Penrith and the Border’s rural market towns continue to be vulnerable to a set of unique challenges, such as misplaced urban growth models and housing targets, and a drive towards ‘contemporary’ design that is often totally at odds and incompatible with our beautiful old streets and buildings. I am fascinated to learn how PFBC’s vision and practices of promoting traditional and sustainable principles of design might benefit us here, and look forward to a thought-provoking presentation.”