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Medway Council to bid for £170 million to unlock potential of Hoo Peninsula

A vision for an underdeveloped stretch of land moved a stage closer to realisation this week when the council submitted a bid for £170 million of government funding.

Medway had previously indicated its wish to secure the money to "unlock the potential" of the Hoo Peninsula but has now become one of 45 authorities to be given the go ahead to bid by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government.

The Housing Infrastructure Fund is a £5.5 billion grant programme which will help deliver a potential 600,000 new homes across England.

The Hoo Peninsula
The Hoo Peninsula

If successful, the council would use its share to improve road and rail connections to the peninsula and has already spoken to Network Rail about the possibility of upgrading an existing freight railway line for use by passengers.

A new relief road to reduce pressure on the A228 and Four Elms roundabout is also on the cards.

A country park and wetland enhancements would also form part of any development.

As part of Medway's Local Plan, which will set out where to build in the Towns up until 2035, a small rural town around Hoo St Werburgh is being considered.

Council leader Cllr Alan Jarrett (Con) said: “Medway is growing ever more popular as the place people want to live, work, learn and visit, and we are committed to providing our residents with more choice.

"This fund gives Medway the opportunity of delivering a sustainable community with new and improved facilities on the Hoo Peninsula.

"As well as providing new housing for the growing population, we also recognise the importance of providing new schools, transport links and health care facilities to cater for our residents now and in the future. We are also working to protect Medway’s natural rural beauty and ensure residents are able to continue enjoying Medway’s rich heritage.”

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