ROMAN VILLA DISCOVERED IN ASHFORD? NO, SHEPWAY. ????

Last Monday evening (15.10.18), the Quaker Meeting Rooms, Ashford held a presentation where Kate Clover, Senior Archaeological Consultant to Arcadis/Proposed Otterpool New Town set out her findings across the Lympne, Newingreen, Westenhanger and Sellindge sites. Unfortunately, just a handful of Shepway residents were in attendance: more on that later.

Apart from the amazing Roman Villa being unearthed at Newingreen, here’s what Kate had to say about the whole area:

Kate Clover
Kate Clover, Arcadis.

“We’ve identified buildings, historic monuments and landscape features that make this area of Shepway distinctive, including churches, farms, military sites, parks, archaeological sites and cottages.

41 Listed Buildings have been identified within 1km of the development site, while the Kent Historic Environment Record (HER) identifies 17 monuments from the prehistoric period (30 000 BC to 600 BC) in the area – most are spots where artefacts such as pottery or tools have been found. Ongoing exploration could lead to more findings which will give us some clues to human activity in the area over 100,000 years ago”

From the slide presentation, we were surprised to discover that the whole of the proposed Otterpool site offered up significant archaeological importance. With a number of areas still being farmed, we are expecting even more discoveries as and when the land becomes open to archaeologist’s.

Not so interesting but baffling is the reason why Kate’s presentation was held in Ashford at a relatively small venue when the presentation would have been of more interest to Shepway residents? How did S&DRA hear about it – purely by chance through a friend of a friend. So what are our local beloved Council up to?

We have now become accustomed to the shenanigans of Leader David Monk in his attempt to push Otterpool Town through against any democratic process involving local residents. This event wasn’t advertised or memo’s sent to Parish Councils, and why didn’t Deputy Leader Hollingsbee and Cllr. Susan Carey (we are wonderful) mention it in the Sellindge propaganda Newsletter? This was another message to the Planning Inspector to say that protocol has been followed and another box ticked along the democratic process.

Our Association will be looking to organise the same presentation on home ground as soon as we can. We, unlike Shepway (F&H) Council will be advertising the event on this website, our friends, associate’s and Social Media.

This isn’t the first time that we have stated that democracy is dead in Shepway (F&H). LOCAL ELECTIONS ARE BEING HELD NEXT MAY. This will be your chance to rid the Civic Centre of Leader Monk and his lackeys.

We would, as always, love to hear your views. on any of our posts.

S&DRA

OUT ON A LYMPNE – Lease or no lease.

On the night of 17th September residents from in and around the Parish of Lympne met at Lympne Village Hall to discuss the  offer, made recently by Homes England (HE) to the Parish Council, of the opportunity to lease out part of Lympne Airfield.

For those of you who don’t know the back story, HE, a Government quango set up with the express purpose of promoting house building within the UK, purchased the airfield in collusion with Folkestone and Hythe District Council (F&HDC), for £9 million of taxpayers’ money from former owners, Phides Estates (headquartered in Jersey).  The purchase was conducted in stealth – not even Lympne Parish Council was aware that a purchase was in view until the deal was completed.

The Airfield is a site of national historic significance, both for its role during WWs 1 and 2, as well as its place in aviation history more generally.  Several planning applications for the site have already been rejected, with one of those judgements being upheld in the High Court.  Nevertheless, there are proposals for housing development on the site within the district’s Local Plan and it is also included within the area of search for the proposed Otterpool New Town, a development of 12,000 homes (or is it 8,000 or 5,500? – the plans are becoming increasingly vague!)

HE clearly want someone else to carry the cost of maintaining the Airfield while they decide what to do with it in the longer term.  Tenancy of the site had already been offered to a local farmer, but HE have offered to lease a subsection of the land to Lympne residents in response to a request from the Parish Council that villagers might continue to have access to the field as they had done for many years whilst the airfield was under the ownership of Phides.  However, whilst offered for a peppercorn rent, the cost of upkeep of the land would pass to the Parish and the length of the lease is only 3 years.  Ominously, the parcel of land on offer almost exactly replicates the piece of the Airfield identified as the green “buffer zone” in F&HDC’s Otterpool proposals, an area laughably supposed to help Lympne retain its distinct village identity while urban sprawl is inexorably imposed on it at every other possible point.

The meeting in the village hall was, unsurprisingly, packed.  Initially it seemed villagers had a straight choice between two options:

  • Accept the lease (although everyone agreed that the term of 3 years was a derisory offer and the lease could only be accepted if the Parish Council were able to negotiate a term nearer to 20 years) and its ongoing maintenance costs, and thereby retain access to the Airfield.

  • Let the local farmer tenant the entire site, and carry the costs of farming it, but lose any access.

The picture became rather more confused however, as there was conflicting information about the possibility of the farmer actually allowing villagers access around the borders of the entire site were he to take possession of all of it.  Clarity on that point was needed to enable residents to finally make up their minds about their preferred option.

Perhaps inevitably, discussion of the needs and preferences of the local canine population, who regularly frequent the Airfield with their owners, took up some time, but the focused contribution of a few speakers encouraged  those present to grasp  the bull by the horns, rather than the dog by the lead, and to consider the strategic implications of either accepting, or rejecting, the lease in the wider context Otterpool New Town.  Whilst willing to consider some development within Lympne, the overwhelming majority, if not all, of the villagers present at the meeting utterly opposed the overwhelming scale of the proposals for Otterpool and deplored the threat the development posed to the history and heritage of the village by the further destruction of the Airfield.  Ultimately, what residents wanted conveyed HE (and F&HDC) was that they:

  • did not condone the arbitrary division of the Airfield and wanted access to as much of it as they could possibly have, ideally by the Parish Council negotiating with HE for the tenancy of the entire site, although it seemed very unlikely HE would agree to this.

  • would prefer to come to an agreement with the tenant farmer for continued access around the borders of the entire site, than accept a lease that enabled HE to pass off the cost of maintaining part of the land on to the village until they were ready (presumably) to build on it.

  • did not want a part in any dealings that could be misinterpreted as condoning HE’s stealth acquisition of the site, or being willing to accept “sweeteners” to help overcome their antipathy to the Otterpool proposals.

There will be further communications between villagers and Parish Council once the view of the local farmer has been accurately established, before a final decision is taken.  The Council is due to meet again with HE in 2 weeks time.

Watch this space.

PUBLIC MEETING LYMPNE VILLAGE HALL. 17th September. 7.30PM.

As the OTTERPOOL NEW TOWN junk sails along into the dystopian distance, another twist has raised an issue that we should all be extremely concerned about.

Following the purchase of The Lympne Airfield by Homes England from an offshore company, thereby saying goodbye to another wedge of taxpayer’s hard earned money to an offshore tax haven, an offer has been set out to the Residents of Lympne that, some would say, sticks the boot in even further. Even if you’re not a Lympne Resident, this concerns each and everyone of us in the Shepway area.

Lympne airfield

With the threat of 30,000 people moving into the area, in addition to the homes in the local plan (34,000 people), the crumbling infrastructure, including the NHS, will not be able to cope. It is vital that we all make the effort to attend this meeting.

Your communities, your future. Come along and have your say. Lympne village hall – 17th September at 7.30pm

S&DRA

 

WALL OF SHAME, HALL OF FAME.

A new page has been added to our website which is encouraging residents to nominate their District Councillor to the Wall of Shame or the Hall of Fame. Just click on the link to view:

https://slurrykent.wordpress.com/our-councillors-fhdc/

This page has a distance to run yet, so get those thinking caps on (as if you’d have to think too hard) and contact us here: https://slurry.org.uk/contact/ with your very own nomination(s).

S&DRA

PRINCES PARADE RESULT.

If we were betting people, would we have put a tenner on the application of Princes Parade being turned down, even at a 1000/1 ? Of course not. Why? Because we have familiarised ourselves with the self serving individuals that fill the halls of the Civic Centre, being out of touch with the majority of Folkestone and Hythe Residents, and probably not giving a jot.

Most of you would now be aware that the application went through, 5 For , 4 Against. For those of you that didn’t attend the Civic Centre last Thursday evening or have viewed the media stream, here’s a a brief summary of the evenings events:

Nine Voting Committee members were in attendance: Clive Goddard (Chair,Con) Roger Wilkins (Con) Dick Pascoe (Con) Philip Martin (Con) Michael Lyons (Con) David Owen (Con). It should be noted at this juncture that David Owen abstained and the remainder voted ‘For’ the application.

The remaining members were: Damon Robinson (UKIP), Len Laws (UKIP) Paul Peacock (Con) Susie Govett (Ind). Needless to say, all 4 voted against the application.

The session lasted a little over 1 hour 50 minutes with comments from all nine members ranging from if you don’t approve this, you’re more than likely to get a Margate style fun fair, travellers or some other monstrosity. After the gallery stopped laughing at Councillor Lyons, we heard from Dick Pascoe who entered the debate with sarcasm, stating that he had emails that opposed the application – at least ten. With a paucity of intelligent comment, the public gallery were dismayed by the contemptible and arrogant position of a so-called peoples representative. Philip Martin was espousing the apparatchik tribal mantra of Pascoe and Lyons, so no change there then. David Owen was concerned about the engineering problem that may ensue, and needed more research to be carried out, so he abstained. Roger Wilkins said nothing (thank goodness) but, once again took the easy, mindless route to vote ‘For’. Goddard, always a banker for a dependable vote with the herd, voted ‘For’.

Susie Govett was the star of the show, citing how Hythe was the posher end of the district and so why would you want even more posher homes, affording a sea view and a top premium attached. It was obvious that the proposed houses built with a sea view, deemed to be ‘affordable’ wouldn’t be affordable at all. There is no such thing as ‘affordable’.

Paul Peacock was damning about the safety surrounding the road re-routing, next to the canal with Damon Robinson and Len Laws questioning the viability and location of the Leisure Centre. All four agreed that if sited at Martello Lakes it would better serve the communities of the Marsh.

The vote was a disappointment but was expected. Where the ‘Save Princes Parade’ group go with this now is up to them. Either way, our Association will, as always, give our full support.

Just to recap: These are the Councillors that wish to build 150 premium priced houses and a Leisure Centre on Princes Parade against the wishes of the majority of the electorate: Goddard, Wilkins, Pascoe, Martin and Lyons.

GoddardwilkinspascoemartinLyons

And these are the Councillors who support the views and wishes of the majority:

Govett, Peacock, Laws and Robinson.

govettPeacocklawsRobinson

Next May, you may well being voting, in a DISTRICT election for one of these Councillors in your ward. Taking off your silly, general election tribal hat, who would you vote for?

Have a good week.

S&DRA.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Princes Parade showdown.

Featured above are the two biggest supporters of turning Princes Parade into an unwanted, unneeded urbanisation: David “Dog toilet” Monk and Jenny Nine homes Hollingsbee; Leader and Deputy Leader respectively. Not only is the proposed development not required, but these two individuals are also not required. Please read on to ensure that this becomes a reality next May.

The application to build 150 houses and a leisure centre on Princes Parade is going before the FHDC Planning Committee, Civic Centre, Castle Hill Avenue, Folkestone, on the 16th August.

With a demonstration beginning at 6.15pm and the Council meeting at 7pm, be sure to allow good time for parking.

The application has the approval of the FHDC Planning department, but this could be overturned by the committee, which would be entirely in order, given that those councillors have been put into public office by Folkestone & Hythe residents, who incidentally, share the view that Princes Parade should be left as an open vista for all to enjoy whilst taking the sea air during their daily or weekly pounding of the promenade

Princes Parade
Princes Parade and Royal Military Canal, aerial view

We are all aware that certain members of the Planning Committee would like to see Princes Parade as another urbanisation, swelling the coffers of developers and others, but do we really need more housing with well over 14,000 houses already in the local plan; houses that will be way out of reach, price-wise, for local people on a local salary? Here are the committee members who will be voting on whether our land is turned into an unwanted, upmarket housing estate:

Membership

Contact information

Support officer: Kate Clark.

Phone: 01303 853267

Email: committee@folkestone-hythe.gov.uk

Web site: http://www.folkestone-hythe.gov.uk

Perhaps you would like to email them (just click on their name to reveal contact details) and ask them their position on misrepresenting the wishes of the majority of residents who wish to enjoy Princes Parade ‘au naturel‘.

If you can’t get along on the 16th August, you can view the whole event via live streaming:

https://shepway.public-i.tv/core/portal/home

Our priority will be to see which committee member(s) will be voting against the wishes of the local population so we can take the appropriate action next May at the District Elections ballot box. We hope you will too.

So our initial message to all of those members is this: We’re watching you very, very closely. Our second message is: We’re all looking forward to seeing you all on Thursday, 16th August.

Until then,

S&DRA.

STICK IN YOUR POSTCODE

No, we’re not targeting you for the latest box set collection of Love Island or The Jeremy Kyle show. If you’re watching such mind numbing diatribe tripe, our prayers this evening will be for you.

We’ve all read about the deforestation of the South American rain forests and how trees and vegetation remove harmful pollutants in our atmosphere. Well, here’s your chance to find out how much pollution is removed in your area simply by sticking in your postcode here:

https://www.ons.gov.uk/visualisations/dvc519/pollution/index.html

With the onset of over 14,000 homes planned for the Shepway region, via the Local (democratic) Plan, spread throughout our towns and villages, the idea of importing an unwanted and unneeded 12,000 dwelling new town at Otterpool, at the behest of Council Leader David Monk and his close associates is disproportionate to the needs of local people.

You wouldn’t have to be an Environmental guru to realise that the more housing and traffic assembled in just one area would, ultimately, bring more pollution, which is why our Association, along with other groups and Parish Councils are vehemently opposed to the destruction of our countryside, giving way to greedy developers and injudicious actions by our so-called representatives.

Hollingsbee laughing48fb5-image-765230Slide1

Deputy Leader Hollingsbee (con), Councillor Carey (con), and Leader Monk, supporting the proposed development being tagged as Otterpool Park.

In a 2016 NHS report it states “Air pollution is contributing to about 40,000 early deaths a year in the UK,”  https://www.nhs.uk/news/heart-and-lungs/air-pollution-kills-40000-a-year-in-the-uk-says-report/

Moreover, the number of vehicles on England’s roads has risen by 2.5 million in the last five years, while road space has only increased by 0.6%. The Local Government Association (LGA) warned that this disparity not only increases congestion and air pollution, but also affects local economies.

Would you support a massive development that would compromise your loved one’s health and even contribute to their early demise?

We have said it before and make no apologies for repeating it: just because you live outside of the proposed New Town area; Sellindge, Lympne, Newingreen, Westenhanger, and Court at Street and think you will not be affected by an additional 30,000 people using the NHS, drinking and bathing in our limited water resources and using local roads, think again.

Please support our campaign by passing on our ‘subscribe’ link to friends, family and neighbours:

http://eepurl.com/c6vAkL

Many thanks,

S&DRA

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

LYMPNE AIRFIELD STILL UNDER ATTACK

With our so-called representatives hell bent on turning our rural communities into a dystopian urban sprawl, David Plumstead has reacted to an article posted in this months Lympne Parish Council’s Newsletter:

http://www.lympnepc.kentparishes.gov.uk/2018/07/23/august-newsletter/

“I have read of Lympne Parish Council’s meeting with Homes England (the Government) whose weasel worded proposal for Lympne Airfield has to be dumped straight back in its lap along with the message ‘Pull the other one it’s got bells on!’

It is vital that everyone opposed to David Monk, Susan Carey, Jennifer Hollingsbee, Damian Collins and Shepway Council’s chaotic, unworkable and patently unsustainable plans for an Otterpool Newtown and equally boneheaded proposals from MPs Collins and Charlie Elphicke for dealing with the horrendous HGV, van and car traffic problems and air pollution that would ensue, understands that they are part of a scheme which relies on the social, physical and environmental destruction of Lympne, its village and historic Airfield and the communities of Sellindge, Newingreen, Westenhanger and West Hythe. Stanford and Aldington would also suffer directly and indirectly

All to satisfy the greed and myopic drive for power of a handful of extremely selfish and self-regarding individuals who have no right to be holding public office.

Within this can of worms the Airfield is our little boy with his finger in the dyke and party pooper to those named above and their grand Otterpool design.

The Friends of Lympne Airfield Association, The Shepway Environment and Community Network and the NO Otterpool Newtown Coalition are 100% opposed to any move that chisels away at the Airfield which must be conserved as it is. Giving any ground, even a few square yards there would inevitably lead to the loss of not just the rest of the Airfield but the villages and communities of Lympne, Sellindge, Newingreen, Westenhanger and West Hythe and we will continue to campaign implacably on that premiss.

Were we to find ourselves in opposition in that regard to our own Parish Council it would signal to Homes England (The Government/ Damian Collins/David Monk/Susan Carey and Jennifer Hollingsbee et al) in letters 10ft tall that the only course of action open to them given the overwhelming community opposition to the Newtown plan is ‘Divide and Rule’.

David Plumstead”

7pm. Thursday, 16th August. Be there.

The application to build 150 houses and a leisure centre on Princes Parade is going before the FHDC Planning Committee on the 16th August. It has the approval of the FHDC Planning department, but this could be overturned by the committee, which would be entirely in order, given that those councillors have been put into public office by Folkestone & Hythe residents, who incidentally, share the view that Princes Parade should be left as an open vista for all to enjoy whilst taking the sea air during their daily or weekly pounding of the promenade

Princes Parade
Princes Parade and Royal Military Canal, aerial view

We are all aware that certain members of the Planning Committee would like to see Princes Parade as another urbanisation, swelling the coffers of developers and others, but do we really need more housing with well over 14,000 houses already in the local plan; houses that will be way out of reach, price-wise, for local people on a local salary? Here are the committee members who will be voting on whether our land is turned into an unwanted, upmarket housing estate:

Membership

Contact information

Support officer: Kate Clark.

Phone: 01303 853267

Email: committee@folkestone-hythe.gov.uk

Web site: http://www.folkestone-hythe.gov.uk

Perhaps you would like to email them (just click on their name to reveal contact details) and ask them their position on misrepresenting the wishes of the majority of residents who wish to enjoy Princes Parade ‘au naturel‘.

If you can’t get along on the 16th August, you can view the whole event via live streaming: Details to follow on this.

Our priority will be to see which committee member(s) will be voting against the wishes of the local population so we can take the appropriate action next May at the District Elections ballot box. We hope you will too.

So our initial message to all of those members is this: We’re watching you very, very closely. Our second message is: We’re all looking forward to seeing you all on Thursday, 16th August.

Until then,

S&DRA.

WATER,WATER EVERYWHERE?

That’s the impression that our beloved Folkestone & Hythe District Council, along with their development bedfellows and apparatchik consultants and PR sidekicks would want us all to believe.

The fact of the matter is, there’s not enough water to support major development in the Folkestone and Hythe area over the coming years.

These are the facts: Affinity Water (AW) our local water company, the experts in delivering water to our taps, are concerned, very concerned that the existing infrastructure will not be able to deliver anything near the amount of water to supply a new town of 12,000 homes. In fact a figure of 1000 homes from AW has already been quoted. (Please see the link below if you think that upgrading the infrastructure is the solution).

AW supply water to 160,000 people in the Folkestone and Hythe area, known as the Dour region. The projected housing figure, excluding the proposed Otterpool New Town, for the area is a further 24,000 homes. This equates to an additional 57,600 people, given the average figure of 2.4 people per household, making 217,600 people. Moreover, no allowance has been made for industry or commercial enterprise. So you wouldn’t have to be a mathematical genius to calculate that with a limited supply of the wet stuff, blanket building in the area would be an environmental disaster.

So what has our Council and their blanket building chums said that will convince us that a 12,000 ( or is it 10,000, 8.500 or 5,500) New Town will have enough water to drink, bathe in and flush our loo’s. In a nutshell, this is what they are saying:

They will install the type of infrastructure that will supply water to Otterpool Town whereby, instead of each resident using the average of around 155 litres each day, they can get it down to 80 litres per person each day.  How? They say that they will be using, through their preferred infrastructure developer; Albion water, a system of ‘re-use’. This could be a combination of grey water (basin, sink, bath shower) and/or rainwater being redirected via a treatment unit, to serve the flushing of WC’s. This would require ‘over and above’ the usual amount of water infrastructure, adding to the cost of each house. Let us not forget that the infrastructure housing fund that was in the offing for Otterpool has been pulled by central Government. And let us also not forget that there is a cost in operating a re-use system that some local residents may well not be able to afford. And what of rainwater use? If the holding reservoir becomes depleted due to a lack of rain, potable water WILL be used to serve the properties.

So, for the moment, let us all agree that residents will be using 80 litres of potable water each day. This would be a saving of 75 litres per person each day. Now, given that our Council can’t make up its mind that the New Town will be 12,000 or 5,500 houses, lets assume an average figure of 8,750 houses. AW have already stated that over the coming years they would be adding an additional 57,600 customers to their base, making a total water output to residential properties of 32.64 million litres of water each and every day.

The total saving of potable water usage at Otterpool New Town, if each house was fitted with a re-use’ facility, and if it rained enough to keep the bulk reservoirs filled, would be 1.575 million litres each and every day. Not to confuse matters, if Otterpool Town (of 8,750 houses) was included in the projected 24,000 homes this would add a further 1.68 million litres to the 32.64 million litres making a grand total of 34.32 million litres.

With developers and FHDC talking as if this scheme was the ‘be all and end all’ to conserve water, we can see that the scale of proposed water saving (if achieved)  across the Dour region is minimal.

The proposal set out to conserve water on this scale is nonsensical and is another exercise in hoodwinking a planning inspector to approve a development that, in environmental terms, really is a ‘bridge too far’.

With our climate changing, we will have to ensure that development is appropriately managed and sited in areas more able to cope with population growth and migration.

To conclude, we are including a submission to the draft FHDC Core Strategy made by Parish Councillor Les Barratt that pretty much sums up the state of play regarding water issues and development in the Folkestone and Hythe area. It is a ‘long read’ but well worth a look.

https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0?ui=2&ik=f3d29dce98&attid=0.1&permmsgid=msg-a:r1659225245353016218&th=164b6af7e01021cf&view=att&disp=safe&realattid=f_jjtovsgp0

If you’re interested in how the water savings will be made by Folkestone & Hythe District Council, please visit the site in 30 years time. If you’re not sure where the water recycling plant is, don’t worry, you cant miss it. It’s right next door to the Unicorn Farm.

Have a nice weekend.

S&DRA