We are extremely disappointed at the recent appeal decision regarding the Tilden Gill site allowing approximately a further 100 houses to be built in Tenterden, however in this political climate relating to the governments drive for more housing, it was probably not entirely unpredictable.
There is a key point to be made from this. We have as the Tenterden & District Residents’ Association (TDRA) repeatedly questioned the TTC why they have not completed a neighbourhood plan for the town, a local development document that holds significant legal sway in matters of future growth of the town and protection of important green areas, particularly in connection the planning policy NPPF released in 2012. The TDRA was aware of the significance of the NPPF 2012, and duly invited a leading planning specialist Emma Andrews from Porta Planning as guest speaker at the 2013 AGM to enlighten the community on the importance of having a neighbourhood plan.
This should have been implemented several years ago when there was government funding to support these reports – which do entail significant costs in compiling. It is crucial to keep up to date with planning policies and expectations, including the NPPF 2012 and local plans done before this are generally considered out of date. It is inexcusable that TTC does not currently have a neighbourhood plan in place and is still relying on outdated local plans. There are many forward thinking parishes who did complete theirs and are more protected against carte blanche development because of it. The council has due diligence to protect Tenterden’s green areas and to manage future development and growth in a sustainable manner.
In respect of the Tilden Gill appeal ruling, I believe the council has the opportunity to order a judicial review within 6 weeks, if this appeal is to be challenged.
I do hope the council starts to think ‘bigger’ and takes a much stronger line on getting this much needed development document completed.
Siggi Nepp, Chairman – TDRA
Download: Tilden Gill article from Kentish Express, April 28th 2016 (PDF, 659Kb)
Link: www.kentonline.co.uk (opens in new window)
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