Published: 13:00, 19 October 2017
Residents in Sholden fear another housing development will threaten its village status resulting in it being “just another part of Deal”.
Greenlight Developments has set out its proposals for 48 homes and a 68-bed nursing home on the site known as Churchfield Farm, behind Vicarage Lane and The Street.
But even before a planning application has been submitted to Dover District Council, many residents are against it.
They say this is because the land was recently described by Dover council as a separation between the settlements of Deal and Sholden in their land allocations Local Plan.
Residents are also concerned about the congestion it would cause in Vicarage Lane after two homeowners in the cul-de-sac agreed in principle to sell their homes to create access to the site – allegedly for more than the market value.
Others say the village has already taken its fair share of developments after Sholden Fields was built and Rhubarb Fields were given the go-ahead in recent years.
Yvonne Birchall, who has lived in Vicarage Lane with her husband Ian for 21 years, said: “The recent development of our village has added enough homes within the precincts of the village and we are in danger of being just another part of Deal.”
Elaine Hewitt, of Vicarage Lane, added: “It wouldn’t be a village any more. It will lose all its personality.”
Mrs Birchall has also questioned the need for another care home. She described her position as “totally anti” and is prepared to fight against the proposals by setting up an action group.
She said: “We do not need another care home within our village as there are already two large homes and another two within a quarter of a mile, one of which is being made larger as we speak.
“A nursing home would add a great deal more traffic with visitors, doctors, supply vehicles and ambulances trying to get onto the site. From a safety angle, it would be extremely difficult for all this extra traffic to access this site.”
She is also concerned about the wildlife on the site such as dormice, sloeworms, dragon flies and screech owls that would be disturbed.
Another couple, who didn’t want to be named, said they moved to the cul-de-sac two years ago because it was quiet. Their concerns are for highway safety including the lack of pavements and the “blind corner” turning into Vicarage Lane.
Greenlight Developments said it had delivered leaflets with its proposal for 500 houses in the vicinity and only received 15 responses, the majority of which were negative.
It has been working on the project for 12 months doing various surveys and liaising with all the relevant consultees.
It says it would have been remiss not to have access position secured. It wouldn’t comment further.
A public meeting and presentation has been organised by Greenlight Developments with the parish council at the village Scout hut at 7pm tonight (Thursday).
Parish councillor Paul Robbins says he will be asking questions about access, traffic and school places.
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