Skip to main content

Stortford Fields is located on the northern fringes of Bishop’s Stortford, on the Hertfordshire/Essex border. This mixed-use development will comprise, on completion in 2027, of roughly 2,200 new homes, a primary school with nursery and relocation of an existing oversubscribed secondary school.

There will also be a care home, 1,000m2 retail area and a four to five-hectare business park that is expected to create approximately 500 new jobs.


Key requirements for this development are the provision of circa 58 hectares of green open space and the adoption of, as well as addition to, existing mature trees and hedgerows, as part of a drive to improve the overall diversity of the site. There will be play areas for children and allotments, new footpaths, cycling routes and bridle ways created.

The first of three major phases comprised 857 homes, a school, neighbourhood centre and sports pavilion.

SDS Case Studies Stortford Fields


SDS GEOlight® attenuation tanks were installed in May 2018 and sit beneath the schools’ full-size football pitch and adjoining junior pitch, which have been designed to provide additional stormwater storage capacity when required. Representing the single largest surface water storage facility yet installed in the UK, the tanks have the capacity to store up to 8,000m³, or eight million litres, of water.

The pre-existing watercourse, in effect an agricultural ditch which runs through the site, provides a natural feature by which the layout of the development is structured, in order to maximise drainage, recreation and biodiversity benefits within an enhanced, 2,250-metre-long green corridor.

A site-wide sustainable drainage scheme linked to the watercourse will improve water levels and water quality in the watercourse. It will also provide a new riparian habitat which includes reed beds and increased plant diversity.


The huge scale of this development demanded that the installation was completed over the course of a number of weeks, requiring SDS to co-ordinate with the different delivery schedules of multiple suppliers to site and the variable progression of associated groundworks.

Ownership and maintenance of the public open spaces will be managed by The Land Trust, a national non-profit organisation committed to the long-term sustainable management of open space for community benefit.


hectares of green, open space


million litres of stormwater storage capacity


metre-long green corridor

It is vital that the specialist suppliers and subcontractors in whom we place our trust deliver not only to the highest standards that we expect, but are sufficiently flexible to respond positively and adjust whenever a change to the plan is required. In SDS, we have a partner on whose unerring capacity to deliver we can always rely.

Steve Pallister, Project Manager, Breheny Civil Engineering

Download the full case study here

SDS GEOlight Stormwater Storage

SDS GEOlight®

SDS GEOlight® ultra-lightweight geocellular stormwater storage systems are made from post-consumer recycled PVC that would usually be destined for landfill and are an ideal material for cost efficient and maintainable underground water storage during storm conditions.

They are preformed, ready to install and provide a market leading underground stormwater storage facility, for the application of stormwater management.

They can also be applied in many different ways, including water recycling, water pollution control and embankment protection.


Discover how the SDS portfolio can benefit your development and get in touch now.