Chamber News and Events

The Castle Inn kindly hosted Farnham Chamber of Commerce’s networking event on 4th June 2019, providing an opportunity for local businesses to hear from developers, Crest Nicholson and Berkeley Homes about how the expansion plans for Farnham town are progressing. New Council Leader, John Neale and Town Clerk, Iain Lynch also introduced themselves and explained their involvement and plans for Farnham.

The Brightwells scheme will see an extension of Farnham town centre with further residential housing including the erection of 239 apartments, a six-screen cinema and multi-storey car park.  The Woolmead development will provide additional apartments. Representatives from both developers gave detail on the expansion, referring to their aim for the physical construction to be as discreet as possible to prevent a build-up of traffic and other major disruption. The event allowed local businesses to ask all-important questions such as how they may be affected and to ensure all elements of the project are in the community’s best interests and preserve Farnham’s unique character. Recognition of this can be seen by the allocation, from Crest Nicholson, of £100,000 of funding set aside for community art; a bespoke piece, among other things, will be created encompassing individual citizens’ stories.

Tim Jones, Development Director for Crest Nicholson, said: “We welcomed the opportunity to talk about Brightwells Yard, which is an exciting opportunity for retailers and businesses in Farnham. The new commercial offer, housing, public space and community art will bring a new lease of life to the town centre.”

Following the overwhelming response from the community, Farnham Chamber Commerce has said they will endeavour to address questions posed to it and may look to host another event for further questions to be asked, as this was the first opportunity for the developers to engage with the Chamber of Commerce.

Amanda Glover, who is Managing Partner of BakerLaw and President of the Farnham Chamber, directed discussion between the developers and local businesses which occurred over canapes and drinks.

John Neale, appointed Council Leader in May of 2019, introduced himself for the first time, explaining his integration within the community so far, and expressed his views for Farnham. The Borough has seen a large transformation recently, with the appointment of 37 out of 50 new Councillors, and one of their collective aims is to see a transition from Farnham being a “retail sector to community centre”, achieved via a multi-planning strategy.

The developments to Farnham which have already begun aim to be completed by the Spring of 2022.