SMARDEN PARISH COUNCIL
Ashford Borough Local Plan to 2030
Smarden Parish Council discussed their response to the Ashford Borough Council Draft Local Plan on Monday 25th July and unanimously agreed the following response.
The PARISH COUNCIL would continue to support the emerging Local Plan for Smarden which identifies up to 25 houses to the year 2030 on the land adjacent to the Charter Hall and a Local Green Space surrounding the Charter Hall from the other side of the ‘pond’ and stretching to approximately 25 metres from the rear gate of the Charter Hall. This Local Green Space is an area identified by Smarden Parish Council and the Charter Hall Committee and agreed with Ashford B.C.
Following the Special Parish Meeting in January, the original Consultation 2 years ago in the Charter Hall, and various other communications, it was decided that it is imperative that we continue to support the Local Plan which was democratically produced and identified a site which was clearly supported by the village.
The Village Consultation identified that Smarden needs a small amount of open market housing, suitable for young families, people to downsize, older or disabled residents, and for people wanting to just live in the village. These homes should be constructed in such a way to enable the price to be kept realistic.
The Parish Council and the Village do not want 50 houses on this site and we will continue to oppose this with all the tools at our disposal. One of the main tools is the Local Plan which the Leader of the Council, Mr. Gerry Clarkson, pointed out, at the Planning Meeting on July 20th, is a document which has taken a long time to produce and should be respected and supported by not only Local and National Government but by Developers as well.
Smarden Parish Council believe that with the support of the Residents of Smarden, the support we are currently receiving from around the UK, the support of our MP, County and Local Councillors, and the emerging Local Plan, we will have a very good chance of winning any Appeal that Gladman may make against the decision to refuse their application for 50 houses. The consultation on the Local Plan, which has been promoted in the Parish Magazine, on the Community Facebook page and via the Charter Hall mailing list, ends on 10th August. It can be viewed at http://www.ashford.gov.uk/local-plan-2030 and you can view hard copies at Ashford, Tenterden, Charing and Wye Libraries. Smarden is on pages 147-148. A copy of these pages is on the Parish Council noticeboards at the Charter Hall and in the village centre. You can submit your comments via the website or send them to Geraldine Dyer firstname.lastname@example.org. Please send a copy of your comments to our Clerk email@example.com
Please support the Local Plan; we believe it provides the best possible outcome for Smarden. John Lowings, Chairman 28th July 2016