If you live in the Hythe East Ward, get your skates out, dust them off and get along to your polling station tomorrow (details below). We can’t tell you who to vote for, nor should… More
Last Thursday, 26th April, 6 Parish Councillors met with Andy Jarrett, Head of Strategic Developments Projects, to hear about the latest update and presentation on the proposed New Town development being called Otterpool Park. According to our sources, it was pretty much the same old rhetoric promoting the advantages of a non piecemeal build with riverside walks and state of the art ‘green’ living.
The Questions and Answers session revealed cracks in the facade with many points put to Mr. Jarrett being deflected or responding with: ‘I’m no expert’. Pressed on the water issues, or lack of, the very best that Mr. Jarrett could come up with was: I am told by Affinity Water that they can supply water to Otterpool Park Town. When questioned on homes for local people, once again, obfuscation was the order of the day.
In a recent FHDC document, Healthier Housing Strategy 2018-2023 (Draft), it clearly states at 4.11:
It is vital that new housing provision within the district meets the needs of the local community and also contributes toward
enabling the district to fully meet its economic and regeneration objectives. The Core Strategy Local Plan (adopted 2013) has committed the Council to the development of a target 8,000 additional homes in the district over the period 2006 to 2031. The Council is now in the process of reviewing the Core Strategy. The evidence base document, the Strategic Housing Market Assessment (SHMA), has indicated that there is an Objectively Assessed Need (OAN) of 14,560 dwellings over the period from 2014 to 2037. This is an additional 6,560 homes over the 2013 Plan. The majority of the 633 homes required each year will be market homes provided through private developers, with the SHMA also identifying a need for an additional 139 affordable dwellings per year.
We make no apologies for repeating our stance on Housing for local needs. The above statement clearly defines, after the Core strategy review, that 14,560 dwellings are required up to 2037. The expression of Interest to build a Town came purely from Shepway District Council (now FHDC). Otterpool is not intended for local people, evidenced by the proposed development of Westenhanger Station, but an empire building, venture capital exercise that will see our Residents, notably young citizens, pushed even further away from the Housing ladder.
With our Leader Monk and Deputy Leader Hollingsbee instrumental in this venture, refusing to attend any public debate, is it any wonder that Residents opprobrium towards our so-called representatives is at boiling point.
We also learn of another Public Consultation being planned for June. Bearing in mind that we have already had two consultations that revealed less than 2% support for the Otterpool development, this will be another box ticking exercise where the results are never released. But FHDC will be able to tell the Planning Inspector that 3 public consultations have taken place and stakeholders are on board.
So, if you’re off on your hol’s and fancy a novel full of lies and deception, pick up a copy of Otterpool Town – The death of Rural Kent. To be found nowhere in your local bookshops.
Have a nice weekend.
Over the past few weeks you may have noticed a digger in the field almost opposite Rose Cottage (the green bungalow) on the A20 at Newingreen.
Oxford Archaeology have been commissioned by land owners to carry out investigative work as to what lies beneath the surface of the site. One wouldn’t have to be Sherlock Holmes to work out that somewhere in the district (so close to Stone Street), fortifications or dwellings would have been a feature on the landscape circa 43-410 AD.
For a local view, our friends at Shepwayvox have now posted on their site the following: https://shepwayvox.org/2018/04/27/probable-roman-villa-discovered-at-otterpool-park/
We believe that this site should be a Scheduled Monument, affording protection against unauthorised change. Please take the time to tell us if you agree. The choice is: A rich history for us all to enjoy or an unaffordable property keeping local salaried Residents firmly off the housing ladder.
Shepwayvox have been busy bringing us up to date with the scheme set up by FHDC and offshore based Cozumel Estates (BVI) to urbanise our communities. Notice the housing corridor through Sellindge and Newingreen. Please take the time to read:
Last Tuesday, 17th April it was mooted that the Housing Infrastructure Fund (HIF) would not be finding its way into the hands of Leader Monk and his cohorts at Folkestone & Hythe District Council (FHDC) to fund the infrastructure to support the proposed Otterpool Park New Town. Today, 19th April, it was confirmed that that was the case:
“Kent County Council’s application for Forward Funding to support the delivery of necessary infrastructure at Otterpool Park, Shepway, will not be taken forward”.
Some residents have suggested that campaigning by our Association and other allied local groups has not gone unnoticed by Government Ministers or the fact that water scarcity in the Shepway region (Dour) could have been a factor, hinting from Central Government that a Town of this size is really a non starter.
On the 31st March a four page letter was sent to Prime Minister May and The Rt Hon Sajid Javid from a local Parish Councillor stating, among other points, that:
There is overwhelming opposition from Residents against the Otterpool Town project.
There is distrust from Parishes and Parishioners against FHDC. The District Council has a track record of alleged corruption which is still being investigated by Kent Police (case ref: ZY/035502/14).
Water Scarcity is a serious issue, compounding the situation with what is, in effect, a New Town being built in Ashford.
FHDC has a close association, via a collaboration agreement, with an offshore headquartered company, Cozumel Estates (Reuben Brothers), which would benefit from the HIF and bring nothing to the UK economy.
A copy of that letter will be released in due course, but for the time being will not be fully disclosed. We believe that that letter may have had an influence in the decision not to release the HIF to FHDC via KCC. If that is the case, we owe our local Parish Councillor, and all those who endorsed the letter a very great debt of gratitude.
Finally, for those of you who missed the Core Strategy review in Sellindge, another event is being held in Hythe next Tuesday 24 April, 3-7pm- Hythe Sports Pavilion, South Road.
And if you’re hoping to get a reasoned argument out of any of the hosts, think again. The box ticking exercise is in full swing.
Shepway District Council has published its Core Strategy Local Plan Review for comment. This is the planning document which sets out the development strategy for the district to 2036/37.
What they have published is an update of the adopted 2013 Core Strategy Local Plan, but now it is pulling Otterpool New Town and developments in Sellindge into the main planning process.
The Plan can be viewed on the District Council’s web site at http://www.shepway.gov.uk/…/planning…/planning-consultations.
Go there and make your comments heard (you may have to register. Don’t let that put you off!) In the meantime, you will have the opportunity to talk to the Planning Officers at the following venues:
Monday 16 April, 3-7pm – Folkestone, Civic Centre.
Tuesday 17 April, 3-7pm – Hawkinge Community Centre
Thursday 19 April, 3-7pm- Sellindge Village Hall
Tuesday 24 April, 3-7pm- Hythe Sports Pavilion, South Road
Wednesday 25 April 3-7pm – 1St New Romney Scout Group HQ, Church Lane
It is vital that as many of us as possible attend these events and attempt to comment on the consultation documents.
STOP PRESS. It has come to our attention, via a local Resident, that vital documentation is not being released within the Core strategy document: The following email (edited) is now with us.
Dear Dr Priest,
Core Strategy, incomplete evidence – consultation postponement required
I was shocked to discover that many of the documents that are necessary to inform the revised Core Strategy have yet to be prepared. This includes important documents such as:
Duty to Co-operate Statement
Shepway Green Infrastructure Report
Shepway Water Cycle Report
Infrastructure Delivery Plan / Infrastructure Table
Shepway Playing Pitch Strategy and Sports Facilities Report
Whole Plan Viability Assessment
We are the tax payers and we expect our Council to act in our best interests – to provide impartial evidence for the Core Strategy to at least allow us to make informed responses to help shape this politically informed document.
The Core Strategy consultation needs to be postponed until all outstanding documentation is available.
Affinity Water are inviting Customers to attend a consultation on their draft Water Resources Management Plan (WRMP) to address the challenges that face the Shepway area over the coming years. Our Association has already highlighted the prospect of a desalination plant being built in Hythe to supplement the shortfall in groundwater reserves due to the proposed Otterpool Town project.
So, if you’re a customer of Affinity Water and would like to comment on the WRMP, all you have to do is email Olivia.firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve a place at the following venue:
Samphire Hoe Ed Shelter, Samphire Road, Dover CT17 9FL. 1st May. 10am – 3pm.
For full details please click on the link below.
We’ll see you on the 1st May.
With little time to spare, we would ask that you open the following link:
The recent announcement by Homes England to purchase 60 hectares of land in Lympne has prompted a backlash by local Residents against the purchase. Here’s what veteran campaigner David Plumstead has to say:
Our airfield has been sold to the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government under the name of ‘Homes England’ for housing as part of its drive to bury us under 12,000 houses a.k.a. Otterpool New Town.
We have fought off threats to the Airfield five times in the last twenty five years as the succession of Planning Inspectors and High Court have supported us.
We will fight this threat as a grass roots community as before and directly challenge the Government’s own officially stated reason for the creation of the Minstry of Housing quoted here from its own website:
“The Ministry of Housing, formerly the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) has been formed to create great places to live and work and to give more power to local people to shape what happens in their area.”
‘Homes England’ (The Ministry) has various powers of its own (e.g. compulsory purchase), but in the main, it has to work through the planning system. Just like any other developer, it needs to seek planning permission from the local planning authority and, where it wants to influence the local plan, it has to make representations like any other objector.
We have registered our objection to the Airfields’ inclusion in the Local Plan which will be debated with the Planning Inspector at the Public Inquiry later this year.
To launch a successful campaign we need to hold a public meeting at Lympne Castle on Tuesday, 3rd April at 7.30pm to explain what we have to do and answer your questions.
David Plumstead. The Friends of Lympne Airfield Association. 01303 265737. Email: email@example.com
Last Chance Saloon – for Places and Policies Local Plan representations.
PPLP Programme Officer Pat Yiga has generously agreed to accept submissions up to midnight tonight via her email address: firstname.lastname@example.org she can be contacted by those having difficulty putting their representations on the SDC ‘Portal’ and there are many of us!
That will enable late submission of representations about the PPLP which are essential if the Planning Inspector is to include them in his/her judgement and recommendations to the Secretary of State following the Local Plan Public Inquiry due to take place in a few months’ time.
Do not forget to to state whether you think:
The Plan is ‘legally compliant’
Whether it is ‘sound’ ie Positively Prepared and Justified
Effective and/or consistent with national policy –
and the Duty of adjacent LA’s to Cooperate
– here are some notes to help you:
- The Plan is not legally compliant as it fails to address the serious issue of air pollution from road traffic. The Government has recently lost a third appeal in the High Court against successful prosecution for failing to implement its own regulations.
- For the same reason the Plan is not ‘sound’ and has also been prepared with a view to encouraging the building of insupportable numbers of houses in inappropriate locations – eg the Otterpool Newtown development in an officially designated area of water scarcity where the supplier – Affinity Water – has raised serious doubt about its ability to comply with its statutory duty to supply sufficient potable water.
- The Plan fails to comply with national policy wherein at Annex 1 Paragraph 2.5.2 the East Kent Audit Report of 7th March highlights an unmet requirement stating:
- The Council needs to set up a public register for contaminated land and for environmental permitting in order to fully satisfy legislative requirements.
That being the case the proposed development at Princes parade PPLP ref. UA18 is unlawful.
- We understand that cooperation has been agreed with the adjacent LAs of Ashford and Dover but we have not been consulted or informed of the nature of the agreement.
Note also the need to answer the following:
Does your representation relate to a new site that has not previously been submitted as part of Local Plan process?
Yes – large parts of proposed Otterpool Newtown
If your representation is seeking a modification, do you consider it necessary to participate at the oral part of the Examination?
Definitely ‘Yes’ I wish to participate in the oral Examination
If you would like to participate at the oral part of the examination, please outline why you consider this to be necessary
To clarify and highlight vital local issues for the Inquiry Inspector’s better appreciation of the very serious concerns of thousands of Shepway residents, notably those arising from proposed housing development on Lympne Airfield, the Otterpool Newtown Plan for 12,000 houses, the proposed development of Prince’s Parade and the ongoing despoliation of Fisherman’s Beach at Hythe.
And generally for the sake of information sharing and upholding the principle of democratic local governance.
This will also appear on our website: www.slurry.org.uk
This is an urgent notice for all residents, especially those living in Lympne, concerning a major Housing Development on Lympne Airfield.
The Department of Communities and Local Government (DCLG) has set up a quango/business which it has called ‘Homes England’ complete with Government money – our money – to buy Lympne Airfield from off-shore (Jersey) registered owners Phides/Somerston Estates as part of its drive to force through Otterpool Newtown.
It was hatched up without public consultation by the DCLG last September and is now being presented as a ‘fait a complis’
Our best chance of stopping this twin curse of the loss of our Airfield and our village is by immediately registering an objection with Shepway District Council (SDC) to any and all housing development on the Airfield referred to in the Places and Policies Local Plan (PPLP) and stating that you wish to give evidence to the Public Inquiry into the PPLP in due course.
But representations to the PPLP have to be registered with SDC before the end of this Monday – 19th -. This can be done by email to email@example.com – and it is very important that you ask for confirmation of receipt of your objection by SDC.
For more information about this, contact:
David Plumstead, Shepway Environment and Community Network (SECN) at this email address: firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 01303 265737
You should also look on the News Page of the Airfield Website: ‘The Friends of Lympne Airfield Association’: http://www.lympneairfield.com
Further information will follow on these revelations. Please share and ask friends, family and colleagues to ‘sign up’ to our site. Thank you.