Sunday, May 21, 2006

New Planning Policy Given 'Thumbs Up'

I’ve just had this Cliftonville West press-release on the new planning policy and have been asked to share it with you:

“The emerging planning policy to stop the further creation of single bedroom flat and bed-sit accommodation in Cliftonville West has been given strong support from the three ward councillors Linda Aldred, Doug Clark and Clive Hart.

The proposed Thanet District Council policy, which all three ward councillors have been lobbying for over the past two years, finally came to the TDC Planning Committee on Wednesday evening (17th May) and it was given a very warm welcome from the Cliftonville West team.

The emerging policy is intended to redress the over supply of bed sit accommodation and houses of multiple occupation that have distorted the local community balance and fuelled serious social problems.  The proposal is to restrict planning applications for one-bedroom flats in the Cliftonville West Renewal Area as families who require more than one bedroom are more likely to stay and become a real part of the local community than single, more transient, individuals.

At the planning meeting Cllr. Linda Aldred said ‘We welcome the proposed policy.  We regularly see the transient nature of Cliftonville West and the problems that it creates through our ward casework and at our councillor surgeries.  Along with the Renewal initiatives in our area this policy could really help bring the ward out of deprivation’.

Following on Cllr. Clive Hart said ‘I agree with Cllr. Aldred.  As ward councillors, We’ve been calling for this action for a long time now and I have spoken to our third colleague Cllr. Clark today who also wants the committee to know he gives this policy his full backing.  Speed is now essential.  Things are happening every day and the implementation can’t come soon enough ’”


Anonymous said...

What a shame that this proposed policy wasn't included in the recently completed local plan process, and why should TDC restrict this policy to Cliftonville. I can think of several areas, if not the whole of Thanet, where the problems of one-bed accomodation are evident.

Anonymous said...

I have only attended one planning meeting and was un-impressed.
We really are in a shambles in Thanet with our Planning set-up and hence the recent adverse reports and financial grant loss.

I had forgotten about the Montgomery's application to set up a major growing facility in Thanet alongside Seamark Road. This application involves a massive investment of many millions of pounds to provide employment for over 200 people within 18 months of starting with employment for 500 when established.

The application was made over a year ago and I find it incredible that a decision has not yet been made.
People dont eat cauliflowers in the way they used to and most children wouldn't know what was on their plate if you cooked it for them. Hence the need to switch in Thanet to other crops. This project to grow tomatoes, cucumbers and sweet peppers not only could provide much needed employment in Thanet but reduces imports.
The application is the most detailed I have seen for a long time and its all there on F/TH/05/0237. The summary on Page 8 of their Planning Statement says it all if you dont want to look through the rest.

Despite the navel gazing that an urban mentality council obsessed with tourism seems to indulge in, it also has a large agricultural remit. Thanet needs to grow food in a modern way. That it will provide long term employment for many low skilled citizens in Thanet (500 jobs) surely must count for something?
I'd rather have glass houses employing large numbers of people than acres of cereals employing one or two only.
If concerns about open views are important why have they been totally ignored by TDC in respect of a well known caravan site and Wiggins' factory and other 'industrial' development near Manston?

Anonymous said...

I support the rules on new small one bed flats, however as developers and landlords see a bigger short-term gain from this type of development they may well fight for planning when they are denied it.

Anonymous said...

anon again!

Oh NO.... there will be even MORE mobile homes going in back gardens now!
Stop that before it becomes as bad as the bedsit quarter.

Anonymous said...

News on glass houses; further delay while F/TH/05/0273 is referred back to Planning Officers and will then have to go before Planning Committee again. So people who want to modernise their farmimg to stay in businees; who want to invest millions of pounds in Thanet and expect to create 500 new jobs, have now waited over a year whilst TDC dithers.
At the same time the same TDC says in effect to messrs Waterbridge, " do nothing on Dreamland site and you can do what you like when your inaction demonstrates unviability".

It is said we deserve the representation we get, but most of us are worthier than this dithering ineffective kindergarten.

James Maskell said...

" do nothing on Dreamland site and you can do what you like when your inaction demonstrates unviability".

Have the viability tests for Dreamland been done yet? From what Ive heard, that is not what TDC says in effect.

Anonymous said...

The problem James is that 'Option C' was on the draft contrary to Inspectors advice. No one seems to be able to clarify exactly what was said on the issue at last week's council meeting! I find it incredible that such an important issue was not spelled out clearly and without prevarication. This lack of clarity of policy seems to afflict TDC like a bad rash.
Could you or someone clearly state what is the 'policy' for Dreamland; at present it is as vague as Mr Brown's infamous criteria for this country to join the Euro and we are still using pound coins!

Local Labour said...

The Labour Group on Thanet District Council kept its word with the residents of Margate and Thanet by again trying to convince the Council to adopt the very reasonable recommendation, made by an independent Planning Inspector for the Local Plan, which strongly came out in favour of Dreamland remaining as an Amusement Park. The Tory Council agreed in January this year to allow other uses including housing for the site.

Leader of the Labour group, Cllr R Nicholson said, “We warned the Tories in January this meant the end for Dreamland as a place to attract visitors to Margate. The inclusion of housing effectively renders the site as uneconomic for anything else, a view supported by the Planning Inspector. Last night we tried again to persuade the Tories but they all seem scared or unwilling to stand up for Margate. Neither were they willing to pay any attention to local views on this matter, which overwhelmingly supported keeping Dreamland alive.

My colleagues and I now see a slow but unstoppable death for this site with housing and a few leisure connected businesses remaining in the near future. Margate and Thanet was let down badly by the Tories, not for the first time and no doubt if they remain in control then residents will continue to be effectively ignored.”

The Labour Group were also shocked by the Conservative Group attempt to change, at the last minute, the recommendation on the adoption of the Local Plan. At least three times an additional recommendation was read out and each time it was different. Council officers had to come to the rescue of the Tories to make any sense of the proceedings.

The Labour Group argued strongly that this was the wrong time and way to change a document that had taken five years to write and although most of the content was in fact set out by Labour members on the council they were unable to support this last minute change and therefore in the public interest did not support the Local Plan.

Nocturnal resident said...

Good on you all but what exactly was altered reference Dreamland in terms of the special 'tests' for non viability? I'm still utterly in the dark.