By incorporating the following key measures:

  • A wind turbine, solar panel array, and ground source heat pump infrastructure which are produce enough energy to satisfy the equivalent of 100% of the new community’s energy needs with a huge amount of excess energy as well, that’s capable of powering the equivalent of 1,617 homes (or potentially businesses) in the surrounding community.


  • New homes with a future-proofed, resilient design that delivers highly energy-efficient and sustainable homes compared to a typically built homes. As well as meeting high local standards of beauty, quality and design, the result will be new homes that have a significantly reduced carbon footprint whilst also helping to enhance Leighton Buzzard as a place.


  • An EV charging station that will enable drivers using the A505 and local communities to charge their vehicles with green, renewable energy – thereby encouraging and supporting the move to green transport.


  • Provision for community operated EV cars for local people to hire (with EV charging facilities alongside) in convenient locations.


  • 7.1 Hectares (over 17 acres) of carefully planted woodland set within 21 hectares (almost 53 acres) of parkland, including allotments, an orchard and play areas. This means that over 50% of the scheme will be dedicated to significantly increasing biodiversity. This area, which is the same size as around 40 football pitches, will make a valuable contribution to tackling climate change by naturally capturing carbon.

The EV charging station will be located just off the A505, enabling electric cars, vans and buses to be charged by power coming directly from the Astral Green energy park. These electric charging facilities will provide fast, easy recharging for both local residents and passing drivers with green, locally produced, renewable energy from the energy park, in a convenient location with a coffee outlet that has views and direct access to the highly popular Astral Lake.

The Energy Park is comprised of a solar array, a wind turbine and an EV charging station.

It is anticipated that the wind turbine will be a Vensys VE82 or similar which has an installed capacity of 1.5MW per annum.

The solar array will be 2.39 hectares (6 acres) with an installed capacity of 2.09MW per annum at a density of 900kWh/ha.

Also, instead of connecting to gas, the Astral Green scheme will be fully electrified with a commitment to the installation of an ambient heat infrastructure network using borehole technology and ground source heat pumps to provide new homes with all their hot water and central heating requirements.

The annual production from the renewable capacity is estimated to be (in kilowatt hours – i.e., “kWh”):

Wind turbine: 4.16 million kWh per annum

Solar array: 2.278 million kWh per annum

TOTAL GREEN RENEWABLE ENERGY: 6.438 million kWh per annum.

To put this into some form of context, if the average home in Central Bedfordshire consumes 3,981kWh of electricity per annum (based on the BEIS, 2020 current average household electricity consumption figures for Central Bedfordshire) then:

6.438 million kWh of energy generated is equivalent to the annual energy consumption of 1,617 average Central Bedfordshire households!

After all the energy needs of the new scheme are met (this includes 243 new homes with an EV charging point for each home, the EV charging station with up to 6 charge points and the Smart Park) there would be enough spare energy to supply the equivalent of 100% of the annual energy needs of 215 average Bedfordshire households.

Alternatively, the electricity can be supplied to any nearby businesses to use.

There will be up to 243 houses, built in a carefully phased way so that the new community gradually establishes itself.

We would expect to deliver the 243 homes and energy park over a 4-year period following planning consent being granted.

Up to 243 new homes will eventually be created, catering for a wide range of housing needs, including first-time buyers, couples, families, and those looking to downsize without leaving the area. Well designed and extremely energy-efficient, these high-quality new homes will be set within attractive, tree-lined streets and green corridors with wildlife-friendly planting. They will be of exceptional design quality which may be rooted in the local traditional aesthetic but could be extended to a more contemporary style. A good mix of character, sizes, types, and tenures including homes for private sale, affordable housing, and intermediate housing such as shared ownership homes can all be provided.

Central Bedfordshire Council requires that 30% of housing on developments is to be affordable. This could include affordable housing made available for people on lower incomes to rent, first home buyer housing, intermediate rent, discounted market housing, shared ownership, or low-cost houses for sale.  

Land for a new health hub has been proposed because this is an urgently needed facility for Leighton Buzzard. A new health hub brings with it a major opportunity for the residents of Leighton Buzzard to improve their health and wellbeing by delivering a wide range of services that are all located within a single state-the-art facility. So far, a location has not been secured. Therefore, as something the town very much needs, Astral Green offers the opportunity to benefit the town in a significant way.

Leighton Buzzard is not alone in facing longstanding pollution and congestion issues from highways with increasing levels of traffic. Part of this proposal is to help bring significant benefits to the area by helping promote both active travel on foot and by bicycle, along with reducing the need for car ownership. Therefore, both new and surrounding residents would be free to hire these community vehicles which would help improve air quality as well as tackle climate change.

We are proposing an extensive amount of green, open space for the whole community to enjoy with a large area of parkland and woodland to the south of the new homes that will significantly increase biodiversity. Totalling over 21 hectares (53 acres), the green open spaces comprise around 50% of the total scheme – that’s around 40 football pitches.

We will also provide a range of play spaces for children and young people of all ages as needed with a play strategy included in the planning application that sets out the amount, type, and indicative location of these play spaces. A range of play and community facilities could be delivered alongside the new homes and we are committed to working closely with Central Bedfordshire Council to determine the exact nature of these.

The new homes will be carefully placed within the landscape to ensure that both new and existing surrounding residents can easily access the open spaces for more active and healthy lifestyles. This is a significant opportunity to help support mental, emotional, and physical wellbeing by providing areas of play, extensive woodland and grassland walks, allotments, an orchard and footpaths and cycleways along green corridors.

An indicative assessment of the potential outputs of Astral Green shows that the new residents will spend £3.3 million each year in shops and on services, and that this investment will also help create 418 new on-site workforce jobs and 172 supply chain jobs.  It will also support an additional 40 jobs locally in the service sectors such as retail, leisure, hospitality and catering.

There will also be financial and other contributions from Astral Green as part of any planning consent, which for instance could include enhancements to Leighton Buzzard’s existing infrastructure as well as contribute to its green spaces.


Astral Green has been carefully designed to enhance the existing community of Leighton Buzzard and provide a long-lasting legacy for generations to come. The new foot and cycle routes proposed will help the shift to more active travel as a first choice for many local residents. The planning application will be accompanied by a comprehensive Transport Assessment, which will consider the implications to local roads and help reduce any impact from the scheme as much as possible.

Any new housing development inevitably increases the number of people that use local services and community resources such as schools, GP surgeries and local roads. However, Astral Green has been carefully designed to help reduce the burden on local amenities alongside helping to grow the town’s prosperity - such as enabling local businesses to expand into the Smart Park’s high-quality commercial spaces.

Minimising traffic impact will be assisted by measures designed to minimise reliance on the private car. By giving residents the opportunity to choose active travel or use public transport, Astral Green will also help enable an active and green travel approach to access the Smart Park for the new local jobs there.

Central Bedfordshire Council will assess how the development affects local services and infrastructure and we will work with the team at every stage to ensure the necessary resources are provided. The Council will identify if any financial contributions are required to support local facilities - such as increased provision for schools - and make the final decision as to where any funds are invested into local services.

Although the scheme does not trigger the need for a school, it is expected that there will be a financial contribution towards these. All contributions will be secured by a legal agreement as part of determining the planning application for Astral Green which the wider community will be consulted upon.

The current parking requirements set by Central Bedfordshire Council will be reviewed alongside local car ownership levels to estimate the anticipated parking demand for Astral Green to ensure that adequate parking provision will be provided.

However, the focus will also be a range of sustainable travel measures aimed at helping people choose greener, cleaner alternatives to the car - such as walking, cycling and buses - to help reduce traffic as much as possible. For example, the community EV cars planned for Astral Green, when coupled with walking and cycling footpaths linking to the surrounding area will provide residents with clean, reliable alternative transport to get where they need to go.

Astral Green will connect via its green walking and cycling corridors to Astral Lake, Clipstone Park - all the way to the proposed country park at Chamberlains Barn.

A proportion of trips will be “captured” on the scheme as they are easily reached by foot or cycle – particularly with the provision of the Smart Park. However, inevitably there will be some trips made by car on the local road network. As part of the proposals, traffic management and measures are being considered amongst other things and discussed with the council to ensure the outcome is acceptable.

If Astral Green is granted planning consent, Arnold White Group intend to deliver the energy park, EV charging station, Smart Park, roads, parkland, woodland and other infrastructure required for the successful delivery of the scheme. The housing will then be undertaken by reputable, high-quality housebuilders who will deliver all the energy-efficient new homes in a timely manner and in accordance with these proposals.