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Fears Kitewood application to build in Beltinge, Herne Bay, will 'destroy' village

By Jack Dyson

Angry residents fear their village could be “destroyed” if a bid to build 180 homes on the outskirts of Herne Bay is approved.

Kitewood Estates submitted proposals to the local authority at the start of the month to erect 41 flats and 139 houses on the eight-hectare plot in Beltinge.

But the plans have already encountered staunch opposition.

(8679943)
(8679943)

Locals believe the construction of a proposed access route in Osborne Gardens will result in lorries travelling through the village centre to access the site.

Resident Veronica Lewis says this will create heavy congestion along Reculver Road.

She said: “We aren’t going to stand for this. The village can be at gridlock sometimes now, so there will be absolute havoc if big lorries are allowed to start running through it.”

Ward councillors Ian and Jeanette Stockley have set up a traffic monitor in Reculver Road, which they say shows as many as 3,000 vehicles travel one way along the thoroughfare each day.

Ms Lewis has gained more than 1,000 signatures to a petition she launched towards the end of 2017, when the proposed access route was first mooted.

“When this surfaced before, people were really angry and they will be now,” she said.

“Not because of the fact houses will be built, but because they’re going to run traffic through our village and destroy it.

Veronica Lewis, right, with fellow campaigners from Osborne Gardens
Veronica Lewis, right, with fellow campaigners from Osborne Gardens

“I live next to where the road will be and it’s going to really impact me as building is allowed to carry on from 7.30am until 4pm six days a week. I’ll have lorries going six feet away from my house day in day out.”

Several objections have also been submitted to Canterbury City Council.

Sheila Kelk wrote: “None of our roads would be able to cope with the volume of the building traffic."

Kitewood’s scheme is one of three planned for the land at Hillborough. Taylor Wimpey hopes to build 900 homes, while a separate application for an unspecified number of properties is expected from another developer.

Kitewood was contacted but has been unable to provide a comment.

Read more: All the latest news from Herne Bay

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