Bishop's Stortford North (Stortford Fields)

The site allocation

Within the East Herts District Plan 2018, it is stated that a minimum of 2,529 new homes shall be accommodated within the allocated sites at Bishop's Stortford North.

This includes 2,200 homes within the Stortford Fields development and 329 within St Michaels Hurst. The Council has now approved a total of 479 homes on St Michael’s Hurst, taking the overall total to 2,679. Delivery of the homes is underway and the build out programme is expected to continue until 2033. 

Further information regarding the initial development allocations can be found in chapter 5 of the East Herts District Plan 2018.

The Neighbourhoods

Bishops Stortford North comprises three neighbourhoods which will include: 

  • Approximately 968 dwellings.
  • A 2FE primary school.
  • A neighbourhood centre comprising a primary care centre; shops with apartments above; a children’s day nursery; and a care home.
  • A football ground at Hoggate’s Park.
  • Three equipped play areas (2 are open).
  • Allotments on Dane O’Coys Road.
  • Open space at Hoggate’s Wood and Ash Grove (accessible by the public but as yet unimproved).

  • Approximately 1,232 homes.
  • A 3FE primary school on Farnham Road (open September 2022).
  • A 6FE secondary school.
  • A neighbourhood centre providing shops and local services (yet to be decided) and modern business premises, with an emphasis on start-ups and SMEs 
  • The restoration of Foxdells Farm and the possibility of it providing a community centre.
  • Two equipped play areas.
  • Farnham Bourne Park.

  • A minimum of 479 dwellings.
  • A care home (open).
  • Three parks and other open spaces: including Bat Willow Country Park between Hazel End Road and the River Stort (open); formal pocket park (open); Central open space.

Planning Permissions

A consortium of four house builders is developing Stortford Fields: Persimmon Homes, Taylor Wimpey, Tilia (formerly Kier Living) and Vistry (incorporating Bovis). A single house builder, Countryside Properties, is developing St Michael’s Hurst.
The initial outline planning permissions were granted in 2015 for Stortford Fields and in 2016 for St Michael’s Hurst, refs. 3/13/0804/OP and 3/13/0886/OP respectively. Although 3/13/0804/OP is an outline application it included full details of the development of the Western Neighbourhood (excluding the school and the neighbourhood centre).

Other applications followed, which set out the detailed design of specific parcels or variations to them. These applications are referred to as ‘Reserved Matters’ (REM), “Variations” (VAR) and “Discharge of Conditions” (CND) applications.
They may be viewed on the Council’s website by searching on the reference numbers on our Object, Comment or View Planning Application or Decision page


Enforcement Action

  • The council served an enforcement notice on the consortium of housebuilders on 15 February 2023 relating to the planting of the bund next to the A120.
  • The Council served an enforcement notice on the consortium of housebuilders on 2 September 2022 relating to the delivery of the footpath/cycleway (leisure route) at the foot of the bund. 


  • 3/18/1898/VAR - Gave detailed permission for 85 more dwellings and other changes to some of the parcels in the Western Neighbourhood to bring the total to 942 in the West and up to 1258 in the East. 
  • X/19/0518/CND - In January 2021, the Council approved an indicative masterplan for the Eastern Neighbourhood within a document called Eastern Neighbourhood Design Principles, which was required by a condition of the original outline planning permission. This now guides the layout and design of the various development parcels in the Eastern Neighbourhood. The parcels fall within different “character areas” and the guidance differentiates the suggested design requirements accordingly. 
  • 3/20/0501/REM – Approval of roads and drainage infrastructure outside the parcels.
  • Applications for the approval of layouts, house types and landscaping for parcels in the Eastern Neighbourhood:3/20/0129/REM Parcels N & O (Vistry)
    • 3/21/1256/REM Parcels M1 & V (TW)
    • 3/21/1599/REM Parcels L & M (Tilia)
    • 3/22/0458/REM Parcels H, J & K (Persimmon)
  • 3/20/1622/OUT – An outline application for residential development on Parcel D1, which was a site allocated for a primary school. Now that a school has been built on Farnham Road, D1 is no longer required for a school.
  • 3/19/2626/FUL – A full application has been approved for the Neighbourhood Centre in the Western Neighbourhood, comprising a primary care centre; shops with apartments over; a children’s day nursery; and a care home.
  • 3/20/0240/CPO – Details of the 6FE Avanti secondary school in the Eastern Neighbourhood.
  • 3/21/2889/CPO - Revised details of a 2FE Avanti primary school in the Western Neighbourhood.

  • 3/16/1897/REM – Details of Phase A (91 dwellings)
  • 3/17/1716/REM – Details of Phase B (128 dwellings)
  • 3/18/0652/OUT- Revised outline application for Phases C & D to increase the overall number of dwellings at St Michaels Hurst to 479, excluding Phase E (see below)
  • 3/20/0683/REM – Details of Phase C (53 dwellings)
  • 3/21/2339/REM – Details of Phase D (207 dwellings)
  • 3/19/1237/FUL – A full application, not yet determined, to build 50 houses on Phase E, a reserve school site, now that a 3FE primary school has been constructed on Farnham Road to serve the area.
  • 3/18/1227/FUL – A full permission for an LNT care home

Supporting Infrastructure

Legal Agreements with the developers of Stortford Fields and St Michael’s Hurst were sealed in 2015 and 2016 respectively to secure the provision and funding of highways and social and economic infrastructure to serve the new development.

The developers undertake works for which they are responsible, and release funds to the local authorities where they are responsible for delivery, in tranches over the life of the development. The payment of funds or the completion of works by the developers is triggered at various points, usually linked to the occupation of dwellings.

This should ensure that the provision of infrastructure keeps pace with the growth in population of the development and it also ensures that the cost of the infrastructure is not all front-loaded, which could threaten the viability of the development. Since funds become available over time they are index-linked to preserve their original value.

The management and maintenance of community infrastructure

As part of the Legal Agreement for Stortford Fields, the developer consortium is required to establish a Community Trust in accordance with the provisions within the agreement. This body will take the transfer of and operate, manage and maintain the community buildings and community infrastructure within Stortford Fields such parks and landscaping.

The developer consortium has set up the Stortford Fields Estate Management Company (SFEMC) which has taken on responsibility of the assets delivered to date. The Council is currently working closely with the consortium to ensure that a Community Trust is established overtime that fully meets the provisions of the legal agreement.  Please visit the Community Trust's website to find out more. 

Concerns about the management and maintenance of public realm and landscaping areas:

Contact Number: 01702 443 555
Office Address: Gateway House, 10 Coopers Way, Southend-on-Sea, Essex, SS2 5TE
Office Hours:Monday to Friday, 8.30am-5.30pm

Note: If you have a maintenance concern about the condition of your property you should take this up directly with the house builder. 

Suspected breaches of planning control: 
Breaches of planning control can take a number of forms such as unauthorised works to protected trees, building works or alterations without planning permission, or not following approved drawings or details approved through planning conditions, such as Construction Management Plans. 

If you suspect there may be a breach of planning control you can report this on our website. This is the quickest and most effective way to report your concern and enables us to formally register it, investigate and feedback information to you as the registered reporting party. Please use our Planning Enforcement Reporting Form

Noise pollution from construction activity:
If you are being affected by noise arising from construction activity, this can be reported to our Environmental Pollution team on our Environmental Pollution page.