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Home   Maidstone   News   Article

Chailey Homes plan on land off Postley Road, near Hayle Park, can be opposed says NLRA's Sean Carter

21 December 2013
by Alan Smith

The proposed development site, just west of Richmond Way

The proposed development site, just west of Richmond Way

More than 50 people attended a public meeting to discuss a controversial planning application for a green field site in a special landscape area.

Chailey Homes has submitted a planning application to Maidstone council seeking outline permission to build 65 flats and houses on a field to the south west of Postley Road, Tovil.

The plot lies below Richmond Way and opposite Hayle Park where Taylor Wimpey are already building 132 homes.

Jacquie Day, the secretary of the North Loose Residents Association, thanked so many people for coming out at short notice at a busy time just before Christmas.

She said: “It’s a common ploy for developers to submit controversial applications either just before Christmas or when everybody’s away in August. By turning out tonight you have shown them that they are not going to get away with slipping this one past us.”

Everybody at the meeting held in the Eling Court day room off Hildenshaw on Friday (20) night was opposed to the application.

Sean Carter, the chairman of the association’s planning committee warned residents that it would be a difficult application to fight - because of the mess that Maidstone council had got itself into.

He said: “Maidstone does not have a Local Plan. It does not have a five-year housing supply. It does not have an air emission policy. It does not have a windfall housing policy and it does not have an integrated transport policy.

“All these things are a green light for developers and make it very hard to contest any application.”

Sean Carter, chairman of NLRA planning committee

Sean Carter, chairman of NLRA planning committee

Nevertheless, Mr Carter said there were still many valid grounds for opposing the Chailey Homes bid and suggested 20 points that could be used in objections. Members of the public then added their own suggestions to the list. Among the concerns were that the plot had been designated as an Area of Local Landscape Importance in the Loose Area Character Assessment - one of the few policies that Maidstone council has adopted.

Also that the approach road would be too narrow at 4.7m width; that building apartment blocks was completely out of character with the area; that the traffic problems on Postley Road would increase dramatically as a result of both this and the Hayle Park traffic adding to the congestion, and also that there had been no prior consultation with the local community.

Bryn Cornwell, the chairman of the Valley Conservation Society, was at the meeting and he pledged the support of his group in opposing the plans.

Mr Carter stressed the need for everybody who was concerned about the application to write to Maidstone Council stating the planning number, using the words “I object” and stating their reasons. Objections could be sent by email to devmancorporatesupport@maidstone.gov.uk

Further guidance from the NLRA website: www.northloose.co.uk

Maidstone council planning application 13/2038 refers.

 

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