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Friends of Ashby Bath Grounds

Ashby's Bath Grounds are the 'Jewel in the Crown' of our historic Market Town.

In the heart of the town's heritage area, the Bath Grounds form part of the Ashby Green Corridor which connects the south of the town to Ashby Castle, creating its unique 'Countryside in the Town Feel'.


It's time for members to renew your annual membership for 2022. Please use the form on our JOIN page

๐—–๐—ข๐—จ๐—ก๐—–๐—œ๐—Ÿ ๐—ง๐—ข ๐—™๐—œ๐—ก๐—”๐—Ÿ๐—œ๐—ฆ๐—˜ ๐—•๐—”๐—ง๐—› ๐—š๐—ฅ๐—ข๐—จ๐—ก๐——๐—ฆ ๐—ฃ๐—จ๐—ฅ๐—–๐—›๐—”๐—ฆ๐—˜ ๐—ข๐—ก ๐— ๐—ข๐—ก๐——๐—”๐—ฌ

It looks as if the Bath Grounds are, at last, going to become publicly owned, one of the Friends' major objectives. 


We're very pleased to see that Ashby Town Council will finally be deciding on Monday 24th January 2022 whether to go ahead with the purchase of the Bath Grounds.


A set of agreements will be debated which will effectively separate the Bath Grounds purchase from the planning application for development around the Royal Hotel (see below). The money paid (ยฃ620k) will have to be used by the Royal owners to undertake major repairs to the fabric of the building, particularly the roof, whether or not their planning application for apartments and an old people's home is approved.


The meeting starts at 18:30 at Legion House, South Street. You can attend in person or watch the debate and/or ask questions at the start of the meeting via zoom:

https://us06web.zoom.us/s/81482640004

Meeting ID: 814 8264 0004

Passcode: 222369


All the meeting papers, which include the various agreements that the Council will be considering signing, are available to download via this link

REVISED PLANS FOR ROYAL HOTEL DEVELOPMENT PUBLISHED


The lengthy saga of the redevelopment of the Royal Hotel has taken another step forward with the publication of revised proposed plans for the enabling development associated with the hotel - a care home behind the cricket pavilion, and apartments and an office block on the Royal Hotel car park. The plans will impact on the view from the Bath Grounds as well as some of the access points to the Bath Grounds. Full details of the proposals can be viewed here


Note: planning permission has already been given for the redevelopment of the Royal Hotel. The link between the two is that the developer says that he needs the enabling development in order to pay for the redevelopment of the Hotel.


There is an opportunity for interested parties and members of the public to submit comments on the enabling development plans by the 26th January 2022. (Because of the significance of this development to the town, it is possible that this date may be extended.)

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Friends of Ashby Bath Grounds

What We Stand For


Our aim is to work to protect and improve the Bath Grounds, Ashby de la Zouch, as a free, public access park and recreational facility for the benefit of the whole community. In particular we:

  • Support enhancement of the Bath Grounds for the benefit of public enjoyment and sporting use.
  • Support the prevention of building on any part of the Bath Grounds.
  • Support community ownership of the Bath Grounds.
  • Support use of the Bath Grounds by community sports organisations provided this does not unduly interfere with enjoyment by other members of the public.

Click here to sign up for our regular email newsletter

 Heritage footpath guide available at Ashby Tourist Information Centre. Or you can download and print it yourself.

Click to find out more!

Bath Grounds Awarded Prestigious Green Flag

Another milestone has been reached in the history of our beloved Bath Grounds with the announcement that they have landed the coveted Green Flag Award. The Green Flag Awardยฎ scheme recognises well managed parks and green spaces, setting the benchmark standard for the management of recreational outdoor spaces across the UK and around the world. The announcement by Ashby Town Council was welcomed by the Friends who have been heavily involved in planning, managing, securing funding, and carrying out many of the improvements to the Bath Grounds over the last six years. This is just reward for the support given by the Ashby community and the FOABG membership.


The Bath Grounds have been transformed over recent years following the formation of the FOABG whose initial focus was to prevent proposed development on the grounds. We recognised that this much loved green heart of Ashby was in need of some additional TLC and embarked on the ambitious โ€˜Heritage Path Projectโ€™ raising some ยฃ65k in funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund and North West Leicestershire District Council. This led to the installation of the new all-weather Heritage Path around the Grounds, the various Historical Interpretation Boards and Mosaics, the archaeological survey and many other initiatives designed to lift the profile of the BG and highlight its historical importance.


These achievements, together with successful โ€˜Save our Bath Groundsโ€™ campaigns in 2014 and 2018 against development on part of the BG, raising a petition of 8,000 signatures, encouraged the Friends to continue to work closely with the Town Council in generating and developing further improvement projects around the Grounds. These have included:

Over the years, the FOABG have benefitted from the support of the Ashby community and enjoy a wide following on social media from people who care deeply about protecting the Bath Grounds for the benefit of residents and visitors alike. The Friends' close relationship with the Town Council and other agencies has proved to be mutually beneficial and has led to many initiatives to reduce ASB and the incidence of dog mess, help prevent vehicles accessing the Grounds and generally helping to improve the overall environment and maintenance of the BG.


The prestigious Green Flag Award does however bring with it a range of specific responsibilities to maintain the standards upon which the Award is based. A key element of the scheme is to be able to demonstrate that suitable Action and Management Plans are in place relating to the Town Councilโ€™s aims for the Bath Grounds.

The Town Council are to be congratulated on developing both these plans which will help guide and improve the maintenance and future enjoyment of the Bath Grounds.  

SEPTEMBER 2019: NEW PLANNING APPLICATION SUBMITTED FOR DEVELOPMENTS IN THE GROUNDS OF THE ROYAL HOTEL

Oakland Hotels Ltd and Peveril Homes Ltd have submitted a planning application (19-01729-FULM) to the NWLDC planning department for the:

โ€˜Erection of a 30 apartment terrace, B1(c) office building, cafe kiosk and 45 senior living apartment block with associated car parking access, landscaping and associated access amendmentsโ€™.

Click here to access our 2019 Planning Application Page for full details plus our submission to NWLDC.


The principle objective of the Friends of Ashby Bath Grounds (FOABG) is to protect and improve the Bath Grounds as a free, public access park and recreational facility for the benefit of the whole community.

Our collective efforts have gone a long way towards achieving that objective. The support of our members and the almost 8000 Ashby residents who signed our petition against development on the Bath Grounds have resulted in the Developer withdrawing the proposal to build houses on the Bath Grounds from his new plans

.

The Town Councilโ€™s proposed purchase of the freehold of the Bath Grounds from Oaklandโ€™s Hotels (which is dependent on the Developer gaining planning approval for this new application) will secure the Bath Grounds for the community, removing any threat to development on this important heritage green space and allowing the cricket and bowls clubs to extend their leases and apply for the sports development funding which they desperately need.

TOWN COUNCIL ANNOUNCES "DEAL" TO PURCHASE THE BATH GROUNDS FOLLOWING LATEST THREAT TO BUILD HOUSES (2018/19)

On April 16th 2019, the Town Council issued a widely reported press statement which said that they have "agreed in principle a deal " with Oakland Hotels to purchase the Bath Grounds. This comes after our petition to Save the Bath Grounds (details below) gathered almost 8000 signatures. The Friends welcome this news but we do have some misgivings over the nature of the "deal" and the price agreed - ยฃ620,000, which is the commercial value if planning permission were granted for the area where house building is threatened. The Friends issued a press statement on Monday 22nd April 2019 which outlines these concerns.

To read both press statements go to the  Housing on the Bath Grounds campaign page.

The Bath Grounds forms part of Ashby's Green Corridor in the heart of the town