Aylesbury has been chosen by the government to become one of three new Garden Towns, which will see it receive more than half a million pounds initially to help improve the long-term plans for the town and develop infrastructure proposals.

In telling AVDC that they were successful in their bid for an initial £540,000, Gavin Barwell MP, Minister of State for Housing and Planning, said: “I am impressed by the strength of local leadership and commitment to transformational change that your expression of interest shows.”

AVDC submitted an application in October explaining why Aylesbury is the perfect place to become part of the Garden Town programme due to its central location within the ‘brain belt’ between Oxford and Cambridge, and its critical role in delivering growth for the district and the wider area. Aylesbury Vale is set to have 27,000 new homes built in the next 15 years, with Aylesbury itself expected to accommodate around 15,000 of them.

Getting Garden Town status gives AVDC the opportunity to develop Aylesbury and the surrounding area in a truly visionary and sustainable way, supporting its development as a settlement that offers the best of town and country living.

The money will be spent in a number of areas such as developing the longer term masterplan for the town, which will look at improving transport links and green infrastructure, which could include new parks and cycle routes. The funding and support that comes hand-in-hand with being a Garden Town will help the whole Vale become a greener, more connected and more vibrant place to live, work and visit.

Councillor Neil Blake, Leader of the Aylesbury Vale District Council said: “I am tremendously pleased that our hard work to make Aylesbury Vale the best possible place to live and work has been recognised by government. People right across the Vale and beyond will benefit from Aylesbury becoming a Garden Town, and it will truly help unlock the town’s full potential. It’s anexciting opportunity to help make Aylesbury a more inclusive, innovative and forward looking town that meets the needs and aspirations of people who live in the area, as well as businesses and visitors.”

AVDC will work closely with a range of partners to deliver the garden towns programme including central government agencies, Buckinghamshire County Council, the two Local Enterprise Partnerships, developers and town and parish councils.