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More homes for busy road

The plot where 40 new homes will be built
The plot where 40 new homes will be built

This plot was earmarked for a new primary school but is now going to be transformed into 40 homes.

The site off St Andrews Road, in Barming, was identified as an ideal spot to build a new primary school but at a meeting of Maidstone Council’s planning committee, members voted to build a housing development instead.

As a condition of the approval, the applicant, Taylor Wimpey, is required to make a contribution of almost £290,000 to Kent County Council’s education funds, to go towards a new two-form entry primary school elsewhere in the area.

The homes, 16 of which will be affordable housing, will be built on the same site as St Andrew’s House, a Grade II listed building which has been converted into apartments.

The plot is skirted by a protected historic ragstone wall that runs along St Andrew’s Road and Hermitage Lane, up to Marigold Way.

The area was marked in the town’s development plan as a space to build a primary school when the former Maidstone Hospital grounds were redeveloped into housing.

However, KCC has since amended its education strategy and claims the site is no longer suitable.

The proposal has caused controversy within the community with objectors raising concerns about the added traffic to an area which already choked by heavy congestion.

The housing provider has to donate an additional £99,540 to share between outdoor space improvements, the Primary Care Trust, youth facilities, new books for the Kent Library and History Centre, and youth facilities.

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