Published: 00:00, 05 August 2014
A group which is campaigning against further house building have released figures which they say prove the Island is overcrowded.
Angry residents launched a Facebook group called Sheppey NO more houses!, which attracted more than 700 members, in response to plans for a development at the former HBC Engineering site in Halfway.
They say the area needs jobs, better traffic management, more schools, doctors and dentists and better sports and recreational facilities before any more homes are put up.
The proposal for the 137 dwellings in Power Station Road has been put forward to Swale council and 30 people have objected online.
Many concerns relate to infrastructure and particularly fears about increased traffic and the already busy junction with Halfway Road and the lights at Halfway Houses which often sees queues along Queenborough Road.
Businessman Andrew Deeley from Minster, has come up with what he calls ‘indisputable facts’ about the numbers of people living here.
He says while he supports all of the objections which have been made around infrastructure, they may be hard to quantify, but his figures should be taken into account by Swale’s planners.
According to Mr Deeley, the UK has around 63.9m people living on 94k square miles of land which works out at roughly 679 people per square mile and in 2007, the country was ranked the 50th most populated in the world.
He says Sheppey has 40.3k people living on 36 square miles of land – around 1,119 people per square mile, which doesn’t include the holiday park population.
“The Isle of Sheppey is significantly more over-populated than the UK average,” he said.
“It has more people per square mile than the rest of the UK has and one of the worst unemployment rates in Kent.
“We accept houses need to be provided for the growing population, but let’s just put them somewhere that has the infrastructure and facilities in place and where it is not already overcrowded.”
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