Friday, June 16, 2006

Do We Have Enough Water? - Ask Sandy

In this week’s “Ask Sandy”, a reader asks if Westgate is about to be paved over for an intergalactic bypass and whether there’s enough water to support the thousands of new homes planned for the island.

Q: Can you ask Sandy if it's correct that the council has plans to allow development of the site of the Lymington road allotments in Westgate and other areas of farmland loosely defined in the area between the Minster road and Shottendane road at the rear of the town? Also, does Thanet have a sufficiently resilient water supply to support the expansion of housing envisaged for the island?

A: At the moment, the Council’s carrying out an open space audit, which will look at every piece of open space in Thanet, including parks, promenades, allotments and outdoor sports facilities, such as tennis courts, football pitches and playing fields. This work will show whether we have the right amount of land for allotments and other open spaces and we will be guided by this work. The Council will only consider releasing allotment land anywhere in the District if the open space audit shows that we don’t need it. As far the farmland goes, this is not the Council’s land and is not identified for development in the Local Plan. Therefore, it would not be considered for development at the moment.

As far as water supplies go, our water supplier, Southern Water are reinforcing their strategic main to improve the area’s water supply and this work will be completed by the middle of next year. This will cope with the major proposed housing expansion. Thanet Council also consults Southern Water on all major development proposals to ensure that they’re happy that there is adequate water supply and foul sewerage disposal.


Anonymous said...

So Lymington Road allotments are at risk if there is not enough uptake of plots!

We have an Allottments Officer at Surestart in Millmead and shouldn't TDC be encouraging uptake of plots? Healthy outdoor pursuit with the reward of fresh produce is environmentally sound and what is that excellent cry of TDC?; "sustainable?"

Yes, Sandy,we know about the strategic main but the question is really about what is flowing in it?

If Southern Drought clearly have insufficient storage capacity or water collection systems ( they are in posession of Drought Orders) to allow normal water usage at the moment and can't guarrantee their present supply, how will they cope with an extra 5,000 homes in Thanet and goodness knows how many more else where?

Today's Gazunder reports the liklihood of more building on Manston Business Park; its interesting to observe more of the water catchment area around Birchington being developed! e.g Two Cs, Manston Business and Montgomery's Glasshouses. Less land for water to trickle through to our underground aquifers!

Anonymous said...


"Outline application for residential development at a density of approximately 50 dwellings per hectare with access from Manston Road.
Applicant: Thanet District Council

Application Number: OL/TH/06/0646
Reception date: 26/05/06


Anonymous said...

Southern Water has told me this week there is a hose pipe ban but no drought order in force.

Anonymous said...

They have the drought order , it is up to them when they are ready to bring it in to force!

Anonymous said...

Ok, TDC, a nice planning application! Thank you 9.35 pm. Who are you selling the allotments by Staner Court to? Who is developing it? What benefit is there to the community as allotments are sold off? What is the history of these allotments? Were they donated to the people of Thanet? This was kept very quiet. I wonder why? No annoucement in local press? How many allotment holders are to be evicted? What are their views as Thanet citizens?
I am very suspicious of a Local Authority selling its citizens assets and being the Planning Decision maker on its own planning application!
Cllr Green, we need some input here? Are the local people happy to see allotments developed by their council?

B of Birchington said...

I am becoming greatly alarmed at the continued expansion of building in Thanet. We do have a duty to wildlife everywhere and they are being aqueezed mercilessly. No it is not just the "furry animals" but the environment as a whole that needs all the diversity of life, both wild, domestic and plant life. All these are necessary for the benefit of the human race that seems hell bent on destroying it.

Anonymous said...

Some interesting info regarding recent plans.

The expansion of Margate Football Club, the proposed development of part of Dane Park, and the building of the Promenade Pub are all contraventions of the covenants applying to this land.
In the covenant applying to Hartsdown, the Hatfields stipulated that the footbal club could not expand outside its then limits. Its lease was then to be 7 years. That has been unlawfully extended by TDC to 99 years.
It also stipulated no Public House was to be built on the land. The Promenade is on this land and TDC had no right to give planning permission.
The covenant applying to Dane Park left by Councillor Woodward stipulates no development to take place. Again TDC has no right to even consider building on this land.

Hard to trust a Council when it apparently flouts the law so flagrantly.

Anonymous said...

anon again!

anonymous 11.18

Please tell us more! Where are these deatails to be found written down please.
This present Council is way too dodgy to be making such 'closed door' efforts to 'get their evil way' and do damage before being stopped.
They seem to forget, they WORK for us, thus most have to agree with what they are proposing before they actually can go ahead!
It's our money they are abusing!

Anonymous said...

The documents are kept at the East Kent Archives Centre


You must make an appointment. These documents have been accessed recently and so should be easy to find.

Anonymous said...

I meant to add that due to the fact that these documents have been found, I would be very surprised if anything more was heard about the Dane Park development OR expansion at Margate FC.

Cllr David Green said...

Anonymous 12.01pm

Staner Court Allotments - If my memory serves me correct, this policy dates from the previous Labour administration. The intention then was to sell off some seriously underused allotments and use some of the money to improve allotments elsewhere and some for social housing.
I'm told there was extensive consultation with allotment holders who were in agreement and certainly it was in the Local Plan without objections.
Whether the policy has changed in any way I dont know, but will find out.

worm said...

I should be interested to know how the money saved was used to improve allotments elsewhere. I have an allotment at Dane Park which is lovely but when I suggested the council might help clear some of the 30 foot trees and 8 feet of bramble cluttering up the plot they had asked me to take, not only was I told "No money" but also no free rent while I clear it myself. I will have to pay £15 for 4 months and the privelege of making the plot even remotely usable. The whole allotments dept is run by one lady working mornings, 4 days a week. Hmmm.It was obviously worth sacrificing some sites so that the remaining ones can be maintained to such a high standard.

earwigger said...

Allotments-regarding Westgate,there is reason to believe that this land was donated to Westgate in memory of the fallen of the the first world war and not the councils to sell-the Royal British Legion should be able to verify this.