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Faversham-based brewer Shepherd Neame sees plan for 63 houses in the countryside thrown out by Swale Borough Council

By Bess Browning

Shepherd Neame’s plan for 63 houses in the countryside has been rejected by Swale Borough Council.

The controversial proposals from the country oldest’s brewer were thrown out before the decision even reached the planning committee.

In November, the Faversham News exclusively revealed that Sheps was planning to develop the land alongside Brogdale Road.

Land off Brogdale Road, Faversham, the site for a proposed development

In January, Faversham Town Council unanimously recommended the plans for refusal after residents voiced their fury through more than 30 letters of objection.

But it was down to the borough council to make the final decision and they revealed on Thursday that they would be refusing the plans because it breaches 14 different policies within the Swale Local Plan and the Bearing Fruits scheme.

“The proposal does not represent sustainable development..." - Swale council head of planning James Freeman

It also violates six different paragraphs of the National Planning Policy Framework.

The letter of refusal from head of planning James Freeman says: “The proposal does not represent sustainable development.

“It fails to consider, recognise or support the town’s role and character which is derived from Faversham’s compact urban form and historic development.”

The news follows the setup of a new Faversham committee – Safeguarding Faversham’s Future.

Representing the group, Bob Lamoon said: “As a concerned resident of Faversham and a member of Safeguarding Faversham, I am delighted that the application to build on land opposite the Greenways off the Brogdale Road has been refused by SBC.

“I am not against development of the town, but whatever is proposed must be sustainable development where the essential character of the town is maintained.”

Bob Lamoon at the Perry Court Farm site

The Safeguarding Faversham’s Future group has been set up to fight against development on agricultural land, including proposed sites in Love Lane, Perry Court and this one.

Mr Lamoon continued: “The refusal statement for this site highlights reasons that are equally applicable to Perry Court and Love Lane developments.

“Agricultural land must continue to be farmed to produce food for our ever-growing population and I am pleased to see that SBC recognise this fact.”

Spokesman for Shepherd Neame John Humphreys said: “We are currently considering our position.”

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