The final nail in the coffin has been hit into ambitious plans to build a 15,000 home ‘garden town’ south of Reading.

That’s because Grazeley has been left out of places selected for housing and development in the Wokingham Local Plan update.

The update was in part triggered after the UK’s nuclear authority raised objections to the new community being built out of fears of its proximity to the nuclear facility in Burghfield.

Plans for the town were part of a joint venture between developers Crest Nicholson, Hallam Land Management and Wilson Enterprises Limited to create what they felt would be a sustainable community close to Reading, Newbury and Wokingham.

READ MORE: Huge changes coming to Wokingham as sites selected for Local Plan update

The developers’ plans were supported by Wokingham, Reading and West Berkshire councils, which were involved in facilitating the project.

Grazeley is located on the border of Wokingham Borough and West Berkshire. Although the majority of Grazeley is within Wokingham Borough, it is understood that part of the ‘garden town’ development would be in West Berkshire.

It would have involved building 15,000 homes, new schools, community centres and a new train station, with access to Reading by car via the A33.

The project even gained £750,000 from the Government’s ‘garden town’ funding announced in March 2019, which was used to speed up specialist survey work and planning works necessary to deliver the development.

However, the project was completely derailed when the Defence Nuclear Organisation – part of the Ministry of Defence – objected to it due to Grazeley’s proximity to the Atomic Weapons Establishment (AWE) in Burghfield.

Reading Chronicle: The site in Grazeley had been earmarked for 15,000 homes, with access to the A33 and a new train station on the Reading to Basingstoke line.The site in Grazeley had been earmarked for 15,000 homes, with access to the A33 and a new train station on the Reading to Basingstoke line.

The collapse of the project meant Wokingham Borough Council had to revise its Local Plan, triggering the update process.

Despite the intervention, the pieces of land that would have made up the Grazeley ‘garden town’ remained on the Wokingham Local Plan update’s ‘suggested sites’ map.

But the sites have now been removed from the map, which was updated following a meeting of Wokingham Borough Council’s executive committee on November 12. You can view the map by clicking here.

The reveal of the new Local Plan update map is the death knell for the Grazeley garden town vision.

It has been in large part replaced with a vision to build 4,500 homes in the Loddon Valley.

Therefore the project to create a new settlement in Wokingham Borough has effectively been downsized and moved five miles east.

READ MORE: University welcomes new 4,500 home 'garden village' south of Reading

The developers and councils which worked on the Grazeley garden town project are not the only ones who have been disappointed by the release of the Local Plan update.

Housebuilding group Berkeley had a proposal to build 2,500 homes east of Twyford.

Berkeley’s plan has not been incorporated into the Local Plan update either.

The update is currently part of a consultation – which you can get involved in by clicking the link here:

The consultation will run until January 24, 2022.

The update will eventually have to go to the Government’s planning inspectorate for approval.