East Herts Development Management Committee

Agreement to Approve 8500 Gilston Homes

History was made at East Herts Council today with an agreement to approve 8500 homes as part of Harlow & Gilston Garden Town.

Submitted by Places for People, the homes and supporting infrastructure proposed in the planning application will make up six of the seven villages planned for the Gilston area of the Garden Town.

It was the biggest ever planning application considered by East Herts Council since the district was formed in 1974.

A further application for 1500 homes from Taylor Wimpey will make up the seventh village, bringing the total to 10,000 new homes to be delivered through to 2050 and beyond.

This application is still to be determined by East Herts Council.

The Gilston development continues Hertfordshire’s history with Garden communities, dating back to over 100 years ago with Letchworth and Welwyn Garden City.

Places for People’s approved plans also include:

  • Six primary schools
  • Two secondary schools
  • Healthcare facilities
  • 29,000m² of employment space
  • Significant areas of green open space
    (will include community and country parks and buffer zones between villages)
  • Leisure Centre
  • Sport facilities


Leader of East Herts Council, Linda Haysey, said: “For many years, we have worked together as part of a five-council partnership to bring a vision to life for a new community at Harlow & Gilston that embraces and responds to the challenges of the future.

“The decision taken by councillors today is a significant step towards ensuring our next generation can live and raise families of their own in East Herts.

“I understand residents will have concerns about the impact of development on this scale, but with that scale comes the investment needed to provide the new services and facilities that build sustainable communities.

“We can and have secured the necessary infrastructure to support growth – the schools, healthcare and transport our children and their families will rely on.

“It is their needs, together with those of residents in and around Harlow & Gilston, that will remain front and centre in the years to come as we seek to harness the opportunities of growth and manage it in a way that protects everything that is valued by our existing communities.”

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