MAJOR new development plans that provide a vision for ‘what a rural town should be’ with the best market in the South West have been revealed, writes Daniel Clark.

Kingswood Homes have unveiled their scheme to fit the Hatherleigh 2028 vision, which includes 123 new homes, retail units, a neighbourhood supermarket, employment sites, a medical centre, pavillion structure, a fur and feather auction facility, and a new market square.

The plans for the market town would see Hatherleigh as a paradigm for how a rural town should position itself in the 21st century, documents submitted to West Devon Borough Council in a planning application state.

The design and access statement with the application says: ‘The vision is for Hatherleigh to have the best market in this part of the South West, attracting new visitors to the town. It is for Hatherleigh market to ‘aspire higher’ and not purely retain the current market format and traders, but to provide a new market area which could attract new traders and customers, bring new life to the town, and realise its potential.’

Hatherleigh has had a market since 1220, but the town’s livestock market closed in February this year.

Despite the decline of its livestock market, Hatherleigh has a popular and successful Pannier Market on Tuesdays, which would continue as part of the redevelopment.

A range of one, two, three and four bedroom properties would be provided as part of the 121 homes, which are a ‘major component of the vision for the town centre’.

The application says that housing will help the new town centre development which might not be viable on its own.

One neighbourhood supermarket or a convenience store, and eight other shops are proposed, but the tenants have not yet been identified.

Kingswood Homes say they are committed to securing a long term operators for Hatherleigh Market which will create an environment which will allow the market to flourish.

West Devon Borough Council planners will decide on the fate of the application at a later date.