NewNeighbourhoodsWith recent proposals for new housing in Letchworth, TTL undertook a project to review previous housing developments and to consider the features we would like to see in new developments (both small and large). TTL final report has been shared with the heritage foundation and councillors. We hope to influence design briefs and design principles to ensure housing promotes low energy living and vibrant communities.

Development of a Neighbourhood Plan is one way in which local residents can influence what happens on land in the town. Once a plan is adopted by a referendum of the town’s residents it must be adhered to in planning decisions. TTL have been researching and sharing knowledge on the steps that would be involved in producing a Neighbourhood Plan for Letchworth. A Neighbourhood Forum would need to be formed to produce a Neighbourhood Plan which contains representatives of the town. We are keen to hear from and work with any individuals or groups that also think a Neighbourhood Plan may be beneficial for the town.



Transition Town Letchworth response to NHDC declaration of a ‘Climate Emergency’

North Herts District Council declared a Climate Emergency at its meeting on 21 May 2019. Transition Town Letchworth (TTL) formed in 2008 and have been undertaking activities to tackle climate change with a local perspective. TTL activities range from helping individuals make lifestyle changes through to strategic activities, like producing a proposal for a cycle network. TTL are keen to work with the council on projects to address climate change going forward, as TTL have done in the recent past with the Plastic Free Letchworth project and the project to install additional cycle parking at community venues and schools across the town. The council … more

Re-Imagining Letchworth Garden City Design Competition

Transition Town Letchworth (TTL) have welcomed the opportunity to view the entries to your design competition. We were pleased to see a range of ideas across the entries for tackling the problem of moving to a more sustainable way of living. TTL still have concerns about the site chosen for this development, in particular the difficulties this creates for a successful shift to sustainable transport when the site is a significant distance from key services and the train station. With four high quality entries, and so much information in the design sheets and supporting documents, comparing the entries was a challenge! … more

A Local Plan for Housing in North Hertfordshire until 2031: Examination in Public

The public examination of North Herts Local Plan will take place at Icknield Centre, Icknield Way, Letchworth Garden City, SG6 1EF. The examination starts on: Monday 13th November 2017 at 9:30am (after that first day, the sessions will start at 9:00am) and under the current schedule the final day will be Thursday 1st March, 2018. Transition Town Letchworth’s aim is that the Local Plan should take account of long-term ‘carbon saving’ measures overall, in terms of the quality of housing, siting in terms of transport links especially walking and cycling, local jobs etc. We do not take a position on … more

A Neighbourhood Plan For Letchworth


Transition Town Letchworth’s September meeting asked the question ‘Does Letchworth Need a Neighbourhood Plan?’ A neighbourhood plan provides a vision and policies for future development of the area and has to be developed by people who live and work in the area. During the meeting the attendees explored what was involved in producing a plan and discussed what could and could not be influenced by a plan. By the end of the meeting there was a majority of attendees who thought that Letchworth would benefit from having a Neighbourhood Plan. We ended the meeting with a quick brainstorming exercise on … more

Join Transition Town Letchworth in exploring whether its time for Garden City residents to develop a Neighbourhood Plan


Around the country local communities are writing Neighbourhood Plans which contain local residents and businesses vision for how their village, town or district should be developed. Inside these plans are ideas on where and how new homes should be built, but they also contain plans for community facilities and projects for tackling local issues. We know parish council’s in Letchworth’s surrounding villages are busy putting their plans together. Letchworth is special, we have a Heritage Foundation and design principles, so do we need a Neighbourhood Plan? The Heritage Foundation can only influence the land they own. A neighbourhood plan, if … more

Visit to Thrift Cottage Ecohouse


The rain was falling steadily as four of us made our way along a gravel path past a young orchard and a magnificent wood yard into the garden of Thrift Cottage outside Datchworth. The house is named after the previous occupant of the plot – Anne Thrift – who created a beautiful garden here while living in an old railway carriage, and the owners’ attitude to life. The Somervilles believe it is possible to consume fewer of the earth’s resources and create less waste by careful and considerate design and still have a beautiful living space and comfortable way of … more

Principles for New Housing

TTL has just published our Housing Group’s report on Sustainable New Housing for Letchworth Garden City.  This was launched at a debate night at David’s Bookshop as part of the Letchworth Festival. The quantity and siting of mass housing development is a contentious matter in this area.  TTL isn’t a campaigning group and as such takes no side in that debate.   Our report addresses the quality of urban design we should seek for all new housing neighbourhoods in Letchworth and beyond. We’d be interested in your thoughts.  You can download it below. ttl_housing_report_-_final … more

Visit to sustainable housing project


TTL Housing Group has contributed our ideas to the Heritage Foundation on sustainable housing for Letchworth.  Some of us have got interested in visiting Hockerton Housing Project, a sustainable housing project.  You can see more about it on their website. We know the journey by road is about 2 hours by car; a bit north east from Nottingham.  We have booked a tour on Saturday 27 June at 2pm.   The three hour tour will be £20 per person (waged) or £15 (low waged or student rate. In good Transition tradition, we hope that TTLers will fill cars for a day … more

New housing for Letchworth?


Last Tuesday was the Letchworth Heritage Foundation Town Meeting. This year a large part of the meeting was spent discussing housing, with the Foundation explaining why it thinks 1,500 houses will be a good thing for the town. As might be expected, there were many in the audience that still had concerns about the new housing. If we are to have new housing, Transition Town Letchworth would like the houses constructed to be as energy efficient as possible and we want to see developments that re-enforce community and a low carbon lifestyle. But how do you have affordable homes, with … more

Comments on the proposed new Design Principles for Letchworth

The LGC Heritage Foundation’s preview of the draft Design Principles which govern the changes householders can make to their properties have really got us thinking.  Many of the problems Ebenezer Howard wanted to solve when he set about creating our Garden City are still relevent today. The Town & Country Planning Association (TCPA) are the modern day incarnation of the Garden City Movement and their manifesto recognises that climate change and resource depletion are two vital challenges we must address in the way we plan our towns and organise our communities.  Personally, I feel Howard would agree with the TCPA … more