06 Dec 2009That’s the verdict of the Doubleday’s planning consultant Mr Paul Sharpe following a consultation exercise which was recently conducted in relation to the development of Stones Farm.
In a recent telephone conversation Mr Sharpe simply brushed to one side the concerns of the Parish Council and wished to pursue a full public consultation in January. The Parish Council has reiterated the fact that it is in our view far too early to determine whether this site is even required in the Local Plan period up to 2016 and this was backed up by Alan Best from Swale Borough Council.
The Parish Council also stated that because such fundamental issues as the route of the Northern Relief Road has not yet even gone to consultation let along been determined that it was a futile exercise that would only need to be repeated once we have sufficient information on which to be consulted.
Mr Sharpe explained that the design and development of Stones Farm was entirely unaffected by the Northern Relief Road.
The Parish Council is most surprised by these comments as it is abundantly obviously that if the Northern Relief Road were to cross the railway line and come through Stones Farm that the positioning of landscape buffering and open spaces, not to mention the noise issues related to an elevated road would have a profound effect on the design of this development.
The Parish Council is concerned that Swale Borough Council who are now desperately seeking to complete the Northern Relief Road will push this site forward irrespective of the need to meet the housing quotas in order to pacify the Doubleday’s with whom they wish to strike a deal for the land to build the road. A position which seems all the more remarkable given that the cost of the land would represent such a miniscule portion of the budget of developing the road.
However these are desperate times and there will not be any government funding for the remaining section of this road, so once again Swale will be faced with building thousands more houses to foot the bill.