Local farmer plans thousands more homes for Kent

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28 Oct 2007

It would appear that a number of news articles have recently appeared attacking the plans of local farmer Kevin Attwood, who farms at Doddington near Sittingbourne, to build thousands of homes in Kent.

Kevin Attwood Vice Chairman of the National Farmers Union who owns farm land adjacent to the Kent Science Park at Sittingbourne has already become embroiled in the battle by residents of Swale to prevent 4,500* homes being constructed to finance the planned expansion of Science Park and a new motorway junction on the M2. Along with another local farming family the Doubleday’s and the Mars pension fund they form the consortium behind these appalling expansion proposals.

Kevin Attwood is also behind the controversial Medway Magna project, which includes proposals for 9,200 homes as well as business units and leisure facilities on a large area of farm land between the M2 and Darland banks Gillingham centred on capstone valley.

These plans have already sparked major political campaigning to protect the Capstone  Valley and attracted more than 12,000 petition signatures leading to criticisms of Medway’s core planning strategy by a government inspector.

Not satisfied with this Mr Attwood was recently given a 10 year lease on the 800 acre College Farm at Wye by Imperial College London. It has sparked fears locally that the farm could also be developed. It is something that was rejected by Ashford Borough  Council when it was in the ownership of the university.

Meanwhile Ashford council has hit the same problem as Medway over its plans to expand as one of the major growth areas of the south east. Its core strategy has been heavily criticised at a public examination by another Government planning inspector.

Its seems somewhat ironic that the vice chairman of the Kent branch of the National Farmers Union who also advises Swale Borough Council on rural matters and preaches about the hardship of fellow farmers is so determined to destroy as much prime agricultural land as he possibly can.

* The last consultation by the Kent Science Park included provision for 4,500 homes, but previously this figure has been stated as 10,000 in the Kent & Medway Structure Plan and also as 5,000 in other documents.


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