Nene Park Trust submits plans to transform former Peterborough riding school into multi-use community education area

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Lynch Farm Riding School closed down after 50 years in 2022.

Plans have been submitted by the Nene Park Trust- which manages Ferry Meadows- to bring an area formerly used by a riding school back into community use.

The Lynch Farm site sits on the edge of Ferry Meadows and was home to the Lynch Farm Riding School for 50 years before the owners retired in September 2022.

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The site, which is located off Wistow Way, has remained unused since. It comprises a Grade II listed farmhouse, and numerus outbuildings, some used for stables, and others for storage.

Lynch Farm in Peterborough.Lynch Farm in Peterborough.
Lynch Farm in Peterborough.

The Nene Park Trust took responsibility for the building and land at Lynch Farm in August 2023 and has now said that it is keen to develop it and offer “experiences of the local community” and have it ready to use by spring 2024.

Plans will include…

An enclosed dog field to offer a safe walking and training space. The space would be available for hire and allow nervous, reactive or dogs with poor recall timed off-lead in a secure environment.

Space for community and paid events including artisan food fairs, a family Easter event, family theatre and hire for day-time event hire including weddings. Public parking would be provided at Ferry Meadows.

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The site masterplan.The site masterplan.
The site masterplan.

The Nene Park Trust team would also use the area to provide more sessions to children on the current programmes including Nature Tots, Home Education and holiday clubs. A maximum of four-half day sessions during term time, and Monday to Friday day sessions in school holidays have been anticipated.

The proposal also includes a space for schools and uniformed groups to camp in a tent village, located on the north edge of the site, alongside the park boundary away from the residential area. At least one of the bell tents will offer accessible camping.

There would also be a 24-space car parking area provided.

The trust has also proposed removing the temporary classroom/office building a currently on the site due to it having fallen into disrepair and replacing it with a temporary toilet block; providing 12 toilets and six urinals. Shower units would also be available 26 weeks a year to accommodate the camping offer.

Matthew Bradbury, Chief Executive of Nene Park Trust, said “We first announced our plans for the former Riding School site back in November, and this proposal is the next step on our journey.

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“Nene Park Trust is committed to providing facilities for recreation, education and culture, and our vision for Lynch Farm will enable us to benefit a wide range of people as well as restoring and maintaining an important historic group of buildings. We believe the different initiatives we have planned will have minimal impact on the local area and levels of activity will not be significantly different to when the riding school was operating.

"We are really excited that the more varied breadth of the offer will enable everyone to enjoy the site.

“As a charity, it is important that we maintain revenue streams to enable us to operate, and to pay for the maintenance and upkeep of the Park and our buildings. When the Trust took on the guardianship of Nene Park back in 1988, Lynch Farm was always included in the arrangement for income-generating purposes, and we think that these plans demonstrate a way of achieving this whilst increasing the benefits to the residents of Peterborough and the local area.”

The application can be viewed on Peterborough City Council’s planning portal, search using reference 24/00248/FUL.