Residents balloted on Chilmington Green development
Karen Hopkins with the
Keep Chilmington Green campaign petition
Families are due to be balloted this week over a major
housing development in Chilmington Green.
Resident Karen Hopkins, of Mock Lane, Great Chart, has privately
funded a postal ballot to be delivered to around 3,000 homes in
Great Chart and Singleton.
The paper will simply ask each homeowner to vote “yes” or “no”
to whether they want the proposed development of up to 5,750 homes
to go ahead.
Although Mrs Hopkins is the chairman of Great Chart with
Singleton Parish Council, she said she was carrying out the
exercise as an individual and not as a parish council
Chilmington Green development petitioning for signatures in the
High Street in Ashford in September
She declined to say how much the survey was costing.
“There have been consultations but they have been consultations
on ‘this is what we’re going to do’ and how many houses would we
like,” she said.
“Residents have never been asked if they want this development
to proceed, so this vote will bring proper democracy to the
Mrs Hopkins, who described herself as a “housewife from
Chilmington”, added she felt the vote was the right thing to
“The proposal to construct a ‘garden city’ at Chilmington Green
has enormous ramifications for everyone in Ashford and the
surrounding areas,” she said.
of Chilmington Green is about to be decided by the planning
inspector, so now is the time for residents to make their voices
She added: “There has been a concerted effort to convince people
that development is inevitable and cannot be prevented.
“However, the development plans were devised in the boom years
before the financial crisis and are based on erroneous growth
The vote will be independently managed and verified by the
Association of Electoral Administrators (AEA), a leading
not-for-profit organisation that has provided ballot services for
trade unions, the NHS and corporations.
The ballot papers were due to be posted yesterday, and residents
are able to vote and post them back by 5pm on December 14.
The results are expected to take a week to collate and will be
published in the press before being passed to the planning
inspector, who is due to look at the Chilmington Green plans in
January next year.
A petition of 8,000 names against the plans was passed to
Ashford Borough Council and No 10 Downing Street in June.
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