Crates ready for harvest at Pond Farm August 2015
Newington Parish Council response, sent 26 March 2015
Following a meeting of Newington Parish Council at which some 130 members of the public attended (and to which Gladman Developments Ltd declined an invitation) please find below our objections to the above application.
It is in breach of existing planning policies namely SH1 section 4 (The local service centres of Boughton, Eastchurch, Newington, Teynham and Leysdown, where new development may be acceptable on previously-developed land within the defined built-up areas or, in the case of new services for the settlement and the surrounding rural area, on other suitable sites that do not harm the settlement pattern or character of the surrounding countryside.), E6 (where it does not meet any of the 9 criteria) and RC3 where it does not have the support of the local Parish Council.
I would also draw you attention to the wording below in the draft local plan;
Newington: Despite its role and level of services, development opportunities are very limited due to the valued and important heritage, landscapes and habitats to the north of the village, poor pedestrian connections between north and south of the village, a restricted internal road network, poor air quality and surrounding high quality agricultural land.
In section 02 of the Design and Access statement the applicants have used the general national trend of an ageing population arguing that there are declines in school age and working populations and that this development is required for the sustainability of the village. That is disputed as local schools have high numbers of pupils and there are now more commuters using the train station.
How many school age children would a development of 330 homes have and where would they attend school?
The nearest A & E hospital is already in special measures and struggling to cope with the existing population.
There is a shortage of local Doctors and although the plan states that there will be a Doctor’s surgery provided it is unclear who will be responsible for its construction.
Transport and Air Quality
The application states that the village amenities are within walking distance. To gain access to these amenities the pedestrians would have to cross the A2. Even if the applicant were to build a pavement and cycle path along the frontage of the development this would not link to the existing village infrastructure. Crossing the A2 outside of the village centre is difficult but with children and at peak times would be dangerous even at a refuge island.
The applicant’s Air Quality report accepts that the existing levels of NO2 in Newington High Street already exceed European safety levels. However the applicant’s experts dismisses the data in 3.3.8 of its report by stating ‘the monitoring locations are influenced by local factors i.e. congestion and a lack of dispersion due to canyon street effects’. The applicants report fails to acknowledge that these local factors apply to the majority of the High Street and the additional traffic created by an additional 330 + 60 homes will only accentuate the congestion and air quality problems.
Fruits of Pond Farm 2015