Marden has been spared the diggers at Church Farm
CPRE Kent is delighted that a developer has dropped its appeal against refusal of plans for a housing estate near Marden.
Gladman Developments Ltd had applied for planning permission to build 150 homes at Church Farm, Maidstone Road, on the outskirts of the mid-Kent village, but this was refused by Maidstone Borough Council in October 2016.
Giving reasons for its decision, the local authority noted that the proposed development lay “outside any defined settlement boundary and would consolidate sporadic development in the area, causing unacceptable visual harm to the character and appearance of the countryside”.
Further, it “would result in significant harm to the setting” of the Grade II-listed Church Farm House and The Old Vicarage while being “detrimental to existing social infrastructure”.
Gladman close to appeal this decision, but in October last year (yes, this had gone under the radar) withdrew its appeal, citing “a change of circumstances at Maidstone Borough Council”.
We believe this to be the fact that the site had not been allocated for development in the council’s Local Plan.
Either way, CPRE Kent, which had made written representation against both the original application and the appeal, is happy to see the back of this wholly inappropriate scheme.
Thursday, February 8, 2018
We have objected to the high number of inappropriate, unsustainable greenfield sites identified in the Maidstone Local Plan.
Commenting on the council’s latest consultation into additional site allocations, Gary Thomas, Chairman of the Maidstone Committee, said: “It is disappointing that Maidstone has set such a high housing target of 18,560 homes, the consequence of which is the number of inappropriate and unsustainable sites which could change the character of many villages and communities within the borough as well as lead to the loss of beautiful greenfield land and important agricultural land.”
View of valley from Boughton Monchelsea, photo by crocus08, flickr
We particularly object to the concentration of sites in Boughton Monchelsea:
- Land at Boughton Lane Loose (75 homes) – grade 2 agricultural land, greenfield, within an area defined as the Loose Landscape of Local Value
- Boughton Mount, Boughton Lane (25 homes)- grade 2 agricultural land, greenfield, within an area defined as the Loose Landscape of Local Value
- Land at Church Street / Heath Road (40 homes) – loss of woodland, within Landscape Character Area No. 29 Boughton Monchelsea to Chart Sutton Plateau’ lack of school places and impact on pedestrian safety by school
- Land at Lywood Farm, Green Lane (25 homes), – unsustainable location and increased traffic
- Hubbards Lane (8 homes) – inappropriate greenfield site, grade 2 agricultural land.