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Fears for primary school plans at Herne Bay Golf Club if Redrow does not build new road

Hopes of building a multi-million-pound primary school could be extinguished if a developer does not lay a road linking it to a 580-home estate, a local authority has been warned.

Canterbury City Council planners are being urged to force Redrow to construct the route during the sixth phase of its development of the former Herne Bay Golf Club.

A CGI showing how parts of the Herne Bay golf course development could look
A CGI showing how parts of the Herne Bay golf course development could look

The site will neighbour Hollamby Estates’ 800-home project at Strode Farm. As part of its bid for the land, Hollamby agreed to hand over a nearby plot for the proposed two-form entry school.

But speaking on behalf of the firm, planning consultant Vic Hester states that Redrow has not included drawings for a road leading to the school in new proposals.

In a letter sent to the city council, he says: “Once the land is transferred, the final matter will be for the council to secure unfettered access to it across the golf club land.

“It was always understood that this would be achieved through a highway from the last phases of the Redrow development.

“There can be no doubt that for these reasons alone you should seek an amendment to secure highway access to the site.

The site of the potential new school on the old Herne Bay Club
The site of the potential new school on the old Herne Bay Club

“The children from the two sites will have the opportunity to safely walk or cycle to school and its location will help integrate housing and community services.”

Mr Hester says Hollamby will give the four-acre plot, which was part of the former golf club, to Kent County Council (KCC) about three months after the first bricks are laid at Strode Farm.

He also points to a letter from KCC education officer Nick Abrahams to the city council about the development in 2015, which states that the county council “will be unable to meet the additional demand of the pupils” from the site without the facility.

But Redrow planning director David Banfield insists the outline plans for the site “do not require us to provide the route”.

Mr Hester added: "There can be no doubt that... you should seek an amendment to the layout of this phase to secure the highway access to the site.

Hollamby development manager Chris Crook
Hollamby development manager Chris Crook

“KCC stand to lose not only the site (because they won’t be able to place a school on it), but financial contributions towards building the primary school.”

Hollamby was given the go-ahead for its development at Strode Farm by High Court judges last summer, after the city council had appealed the Housing Secretary’s decision to grant the application.

But the company's development manager, Chris Crook, says work is yet to begin at the site.

The Herne Bay Golf Club project is the only one of the town’s major schemes to have started, with more than 170 homes built.

KCC education officer Marisa White said: “We are aware of concerns surrounding access to the proposed primary school site on the former golf course.

“We are working with our partners to bring about a solution as swiftly as possible.”

News from our universities, local primary and secondary schools including Ofsted inspections and league tables can be found here.

Read more: All the latest news from Herne Bay

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