Kilnwood Vale

Community Life at Kilnwood Vale

Located a few miles from Horsham in West Sussex is Kilnwood Vale. With a tree-lined boulevard as its central spine and lots of green courtyards and corridors, Kilnwood Vale will have 2,500 homes and has been designed in a way that focusses upon being a neighbourly place to live.

With a mix of house builders present at the development, rented properties and Crest Nicholson as master developer, there are several different stakeholders involved in the community – making placemaking and community engagement initiatives even more important.

Building community ownership and engagement

The first phase of this development comprising 350 homes has already been completed and Preim is working to ensure that the green spaces, play facilities and sustainable urban development’s infrastructure is in great order and well maintained.

Here, Preim’s challenges lie around working with an existing community that already has an established Residents Management Company structure in place and then incorporating the wider, newer development. Historically, in these earlier phases of the development, homeowners may or may not have been paying an estate charge. As a result, we do sometimes need to work hard to help change people’s hearts and minds around service delivery and a shared vision of a great new community.

We believe very strongly: ‘if the green spaces and other communal amenities look great, people can see what they get for their money’.

Overcoming legacy placekeeping challenges

Just as Preim came to Kilnwood Vale with an established community ownership model in place, we also arrived at a time where some areas on the first phase of the development had been maintained and others not. Working closely with Crest Nicholson, and the community steering group, Preim has sought to address all homebuyers’ concerns around the provision of a quality estate management service by adopting a more consistent and thorough approach to maintaining the communal amenities.

The result is that the first phase of the development is now well looked after and maintained, with the green spaces being enjoyed by residents at events from community fun days to Easter egg hunts.

Watch the video below to see a snippet of the community at Kilnwood Vale, along with snapshots of some of the events organised by Preim’s community mobiliser at the West Sussex development:


If you are a developer, keen to learn more about a community-ownership model, growing community engagement, or green space management and placemaking initiatives, contact Andrew New, director at Preim. Andrew would be delighted to hear from you: +44 (0)1778 382210