Email: team@sloughcentral.com

Phone: 01753 394141

Follow us on:

Useful information

How to get involved

Please sign up to our mailing list if you would like to be updated on the progress of Slough Central.


If you have any questions or comments, please contact us via email at team@sloughcentral.com or by calling 01753 394141.


If you’re a representative of a local group, we would love to speak to you and hear your thoughts on the outline application. Please contact us to arrange a meeting.

Timeline

An outline planning application for the Queensmere Shopping Centre (P/19689/000) has been submitted to Slough Borough Council. The application should be determined by the Council in the summer of 2022. Subject to approval, it will be followed by a series of Reserved Matters applications which will establish the design details for each phase of development.


An indicative timetable for the Queensmere site is shown below:

October 2021
Submission of outline planning application to Slough Borough Council
Summer 2022
Anticipated decision by Slough Borough Council
Q3 2023
Submission of Phase 1 Reserve Matters Application (c.600 homes + Town Square)
Q1 2024
Commence demolition of the Queensmere Shopping Centre
Q4 2024
Start on Phase 1
Q4 2026
First homes & Town Square delivered

October 2021

Submission of outline planning application to Slough Borough Council

Summer 2022

Anticipated decision by Slough Borough Council

Q3 2023

Submission of Phase 1 Reserve Matters Application (c.600 homes + Town Square)

Q1 2024

Commence demolition of the Queensmere Shopping Centre

Q4 2024

Start on Phase 1

Q4 2026

First homes & Town Square delivered

Application documents

Please see below links to some of the key documents we have submitted to Slough Borough Council:

You can also access the full suite of detailed planning documents we have submitted as part of the outline planning application by visiting Slough Borough Council’s planning portal here (application reference P/19689/000).

FAQs

We have outlined some Frequently Asked Questions below. Hopefully the answer to your question is covered in the responses below. If not, please do get in touch with the team, who will be happy to assist.

Sorry, your search has no matches.

The application (P/19689/000) is now live on the Council’s planning portal. Here you can access the documents which support the outline planning application. Some of these documents are also hosted on our website. You can also provide comments on the application via the planning portal.


Should you have any questions or issues accessing information, please do get in touch with us by emailing team@sloughcentral.com.

We anticipate that the outline planning application will be presented to the Council’s Planning Committee in Autumn 2022. A report from the case officer assessing the application and providing a recommendation to members will be published ahead of the meeting.

Slough Central is the name given to the proposed redevelopment of the Queensmere & Observatory shopping centres, located in Slough town centre. The current planning application relates to the Queensmere Shopping Centre only.


Slough Central is an important site in the heart of the town centre. The redevelopment of the site aims to bring investment, community and activity to the town centre. After many years of promises, the transformation of the town centre is really happening.

Slough Central is an important site in the heart of the town centre. The redevelopment of the site aims to bring investment, community and activity to the town centre. After many years of promises, the transformation of the town centre is really happening.


The Queensmere Shopping Centre was built in the 1970s, with the later addition of the Observatory Shopping Centre, built in the early 1990s. Both centres have suffered from the global challenges created by lifestyle changes and the growth in online retail. This is particularly true for the Queensmere Centre; its condition is declining and it is not suited to modern retail in terms of its size and shape, containing several large units designed for the likes of Woolworths, which have been made redundant by advances in technology and logistics.


The existing shopping centres also restrict pedestrian movement around the town centre and in particular between the train station and the existing High Street.


Feedback during our public consultation indicated a strong desire from the community to see investment and positive change in the town centre, in order to make it more welcoming to all and to preserve its diversity.


There is therefore an opportunity to redevelop this key part of the town centre to provide a mix of uses and activities, whilst also improving connections and movement through the town centre. This will contribute substantially to future growth and prosperity in Slough.


The redevelopment of Slough Central is aligned with Slough Borough’s Council’s aspirations for growth – as set out in the Council’s Inclusive Growth Strategy, Regeneration Framework and emerging Spatial Strategy.

The Queensmere Observatory Shopping Centre site is owned by a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA). The Slough Central project is being led by British Land as Development and Asset Manager. The outline planning application has been submitted in the name of ‘Green Monarch B1 2016 Limited’ c/o British Land Property Management Ltd.

Slough Borough Council are the local authority for the Slough Central project. They have a dual role in the project. We are working with their regeneration officers to ensure the proposals align with the Council’s broader investment and regeneration plans for the town centre.


Slough Borough Council also have a regulatory/statutory role as the local planning authority. The Slough Central team engaged with the planning team throughout the pre-application process and officers are now reviewing the outline planning application for the Queensmere Shopping Centre and will soon make a recommendation as to whether the application should be approved. Elected local councillors sitting on the Planning Committee will then decide whether outline planning permission should be granted.

The initial proposals for Slough Central were developed in masterplan form. The purpose of the masterplan was to establish the vision and design principles for Slough Central. This was the basis of the information used for community consultation in 2020-2021.


An outline planning application has since been prepared for the Queensmere Shopping Centre drawing on the principles established in the site masterplan.


The outline planning application has now been submitted to Slough Borough Council and is supported by a series of plans referred to as ‘Parameter Plans’ which set future design controls for the site, including for example:


  • The range of uses;
  • Maximum building heights;
  • The areas which can be built upon;
  • Areas protected for public space; and
  • Key routes and connections through the site.

Subject to Slough Borough Council granting outline planning permission, the details of individual buildings and public spaces will be submitted as ‘Reserved Matters’ planning applications at a later date.

Reserved Matters applications (RMAs) are detailed planning applications which are submitted following the approval of outline planning applications for large and complex sites such as this. The purpose of RMAs is to work within the consented framework for development set out in the outline planning permission to establish the finer details of building design e.g. detailed layouts; materials; design; uses; and landscaping.


An outline planning permission approves the principle and broad parameters for redevelopment; following this, RMAs must be submitted and approved for each phase of development before works can begin. RMAs are subject to the same consultation and scrutiny as other detailed planning applications.

We first shared the plans for Slough Central in Spring 2020. The purpose of Stage 1 of the consultation was to start a conversation with the community about Slough Central and to hear suggestions and ideas about the future of the site. During this consultation, we explained why the shopping centres are in need of redevelopment and shared an early vision for the site.


Stage 2 of the consultation took place in May-June 2021 and provided the community with an update on the masterplan, including the focus on a housing-led approach, while reinforcing the overall vision for Slough Central.


We presented the final outline proposals for the Queensmere Shopping Centre site during September – October 2021, providing the community and stakeholders an overview of the outline planning application ahead of submission to the Council.


Both the Stage 1 & Stage 2 consultations were undertaken ‘at a distance’, using a range of online and offline tools to raise awareness of the proposals and gather feedback. Our Autumn 2021 consultation included in-person pop-up events on the High Street.


For more information on our consultation activities prior to submission, please see the Statement of Community Involvement submitted as part of the planning application.

The key themes which emerged from feedback during public consultation include:


  • General support for the redevelopment of the Queensmere & Observatory shopping centres;
  • A strong desire for improvements to the town centre to make it more vibrant and welcoming to all;
  • Enthusiasm for the provision of new retail and support for new shops and restaurants that support the town centre;
  • Support for new, attractive and accessible public spaces;
  • Support for new pedestrian and cycle routes through the town centre;
  • A sense of pride in Slough and a desire to ensure it provides opportunities for future generations;
  • A sense of pride regarding the blend of cultures in Slough and a desire to see this diversity continue to prosper in the town centre.

For further details on the feedback received during the consultation, please see our Statement of Community Involvement.

Here are some of the ways we have responded to your feedback:


  1. Delivery of more homes – the proposals now include more homes located centrally within the town centre. The proposals will deliver a mix of housing types and tenures, including provision of affordable homes in the first phase of development.
  2. Providing quality public spaces – the proposals now include a series of neighbourhood and public spaces for use by the public. The spaces will be safe and secure.
  3. Improved routes and connections – the proposals include prominent, safe routes through the town centre, creating a town centre that is easier, safer and more welcoming to pass through.
  4. Supporting the existing High Street – the proposals include new retail space, which complements the existing High Street and directs footfall to the heart of the High Street.
  5. A focus on accessibility and inclusivity – the proposals include new routes and public spaces, which seek to provide space for all to access and enjoy within the town centre.

For more information on how the proposals have responded to feedback, please see our Statement of Community Involvement.

We used a range of tools to engage with local people, aiming to maximise participation while safeguarding the wellbeing of the community. Ensuring that the consultation was inclusive was a key priority throughout.


A range of online and offline tools were used to promote the consultation, including a postal newsletter; e-newsletter; newspaper adverts; and social media adverts. People were able to provide feedback via and could also request printed consultation materials and/or get in touch with the team using the contact details provided.


Following the easing of restrictions, we were delighted to hold in-person pop-up events on the High Street and engage face-to-face with local people. We plan to hold further such events between now and the determination of the application to raise awareness of and discuss the application.


For more information on our consultation activities prior to submission, please see the Statement of Community Involvement.

The outline planning application for the Queensmere Shopping Centre proposes to place restrictions on future building heights on the site, this includes:


  • Development of no more than 7 storeys fronting the High Street
  • Development of no more than 6 storeys fronting St Ethelbert’s Church
  • Development of no more than 19 storeys across the remainder of the site – with the taller elements located towards Wellington Street and the centre of the site

The final height and location of the buildings will be agreed at a later stage via detailed Reserved Matters planning applications.

The outline planning application for the Queensmere site provides a framework for up to 1,600 new homes. This will include:


  • Homes for private sale
  • Homes for rent
  • Affordable homes
  • Older persons’ accommodation where there is demand.

Whilst the detail of the proposed new homes will be reserved for a future planning application, the proposals incorporate a mix of 1, 2 and 3-bedroom homes.

The new homes on the site will include a mix of private and affordable homes supporting a range of household incomes.


The precise level of affordable housing is still to be determined and will be confirmed at a later stage in the planning process.

Slough has a significant shortfall in homes for local people. Slough Borough Council predicts that more than 15,000 new homes will be needed over the next 15 years. There are a number of developments being brought forward in the town centre but more homes are needed to ensure that there are enough good quality homes available in Slough.


A development in the heart of Slough will not only deliver much-needed new homes but will also support the wider regeneration of the town centre by delivering new modern retail space, food and leisure uses. It will also provide safe and welcoming public spaces that will benefit both residents of the development and the wider Slough community.

Potential impact on local infrastructure and services has been a key consideration throughout the design process to date. As part of the outline planning application, we have reviewed supply and demand in terms of local infrastructure and services – such as education facilities and health centres. As part of the planning application process, we will seek agreement with the Council on any measures or financial/physical contributions that are necessary to accommodate increased demand arising from the proposed development. This will be confirmed in the report to Planning Committee in Summer 2022.

The proposals for Slough Central will include high-quality, flexible new space for shops, restaurants and town centre uses, which will support the existing High Street.


The outline planning application for the Queensmere Shopping Centre has identified potential to provide up to 12,000 sqm of flexible town centre space. The flexible town centre space aims to meet the needs of existing and future residents and will complement the existing High Street. There is an allowance for up to a further 3,750 sq.m of floorspace that could be used to support a small cinema, live music venue or pubs/bars where there is demand.


This approach will help to sustain this part of the town centre for years to come, providing shops and restaurants in this central, accessible location. We understand from Stage 1 consultation that this is a key priority for many residents.


The new town centre uses will create long-lasting, positive economic impacts, through the creation of new jobs and increased footfall and spending at local businesses.

Please get in touch with the team by emailing team@sloughcentral.com – your details will be passed on to the Asset Managers who will contact you in due course and keep you updated on progress.

We continue to work with occupiers in the existing shopping centres to help them through the recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic. We are also bringing additional activity into the centre, as seen with the recent openings of Chicking, Ryyan Fishmongers and upcoming opening of JD Sports.


In addition to this, we are working on meanwhile uses and offering local charities and other organisations the opportunity to use space within the centre.


Moving forward, we are open to working with long standing existing traders to explore their future options on site while also ensuring they are supported if they are looking to secure new premises.


It is envisaged the Observatory Shopping Centre will continue to trade as a retail centre for some time.

The Queensmere outline planning application has been developed in line with the Council’s priorities to support sustainable modes of travel such as walking, cycling and public transport and to reduce the need to travel by car. Car parking will be provided within the proposals, but at a level which supports environmental improvements to the town centre. The Queensmere outline planning application allows for up to 550 car parking spaces for the residential development. This could rise to 685 if the full 40,000 sq.m of offices are delivered.

We are conscious of existing pressures in terms of on-street parking locally. Whilst it is ultimately in the control of Slough Borough Council, it is expected that new residents of the development who do not have a parking space on-site will not be permitted to apply for a car parking permit for streets in the surrounding area.

We have identified a number of opportunities to improve connections through and around the site. The proposals seek to:


  • Improve the route between the train station and the High Street, providing a direct and safe route to the heart of the town centre
  • Enhance the east-west route along the High Street
  • Create calmer residential streets that connect the new homes to the wider town centre

Please see the ‘Queensmere Application’ page of the Slough Central website for an illustration of the new routes proposed within the outline planning application.

The development will be built over a phased period, which will take approximately 15 years. A decision on the outline planning application is anticipated in Summer 2022.


Once an outline permission is established, it will allow further planning applications for the detail of buildings, roads and landscape (known as Reserved Matters Applications or RMAs) to be submitted to the Council on a phased basis.


Due to the size and scale of Slough Central, there are a number of actions needed to allow construction to start on site – the first being the phased demolition of the existing buildings.


Following demolition, development will commence on Phase 1 of the Queensmere site. Whilst the detail is still to be determined, Phase 1 is likely to start at the western end of the High Street – located adjacent to The Curve. Phase 1 will comprise the new Town Square, in addition to new homes and town centre uses. Phase 1 will kickstart the transformation of the town centre.


We will ensure that the town centre remains accessible to the local community at all times through the construction period. This will be controlled by a Construction Environmental Management Plan that will be required to be submitted to Slough Borough Council prior to the demolition of the existing Queensmere Shopping Centre.

Construction contractors will need to adhere to the ‘Considerate Construction Scheme’ throughout each phase of development. This will be considered in the Construction Environmental Management Plans that will be submitted prior to the commencement of any phase of development.


As part of our Construction Environmental Management Plan(s), clear guidelines will be set for contractors on working hours and measures taken to ensure noise from major demolition work is kept at a minimum through. An Indicative Construction Logistics Management Plan has been submitted as part of the Queensmere outline planning application and detailed plans/strategies will be submitted for each relevant phase of development.


We will endeavour to do all we can to ensure that disruption to residents is kept to a minimum. As the development will be delivered in distinct phases over approximately 15 years, the construction will not be concentrated in one location for the whole period.

Following feedback from the Council and its advisors, we have submitted a number of amendments and clarifications to the outline planning application. Key changes include:


  • Revised access arrangements- with traffic to enter the site in a one-way direction from Wellington Street (A4) between Development Zones 1 and 4 and travel in a west-east direction and leave to the north-east at the HTC roundabout and Queensmere Road. A limited number of vehicles are still permitted to leave to the south (via Church Street) to facilitate delivery and servicing to some of the development plots.

  • A revised cap on the amount of commercial floorspace - The application has now been amended to propose an overall cap of 12,000 sq.m on Class E, Class F and sui-generis floorspace.

    In addition, we have made a number of minor revisions/clarifications, as below:


    1. Clarification of car parking numbers

    2. Clarification of the flexibility sought across land uses

    3. Inclusion of an option to provide an early-years nursery on-site (Development Zone 6).

    4. Refinement of the Development Zone boundaries proposed on the scheme Parameter Plans

    5. Inclusion of minimum areas for the principal public realm areas

    6. Inclusion of measures to protect pedestrian views of St Ethelbert’s Church from the High Street

    7. Inclusion of measures to protect pedestrian views from Brunel Way into the site

    8. Submission of new plans to provide further clarification on elements of the proposals


    The Environmental Statement which supports the planning application has been formally updated to reflect the changes outlined above. This is requirement under Regulation 25 of the Town and Country Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) Regulations 2017. A new Non-Technical Summary of the Environmental Statement is provided on the ‘Useful Information’ page.

All documents submitted in June 2022 are available to view via Slough Borough Council’s planning register. Please use planning reference no. P/19689/000. A selection of the updated documents – including the Cover Letter, Illustrative Landscape Masterplan and Non-Technical Summary of the Environmental Statement, to the ‘Useful information’ page.

We anticipate the outline planning application to be presented to the Council’s Planning Committee in September 2022. The Planning Committee Report which advises of the Officer’s recommendation (to approve or refuse) should be publicly available on the Councils’ website in mid-September 2022.

Please get in touch with us at team@sloughcentral.com or by calling 01753 394141. While this is an outline planning application and therefore many details cannot be confirmed at this stage, we will provide as much information as we are able to.

Get in touch!

If you have any questions about the project, please get in touch