Update on Hospital Field and the draft Local Plan

Hospital Field

There has been an awful lot of work going on behind the scenes with regard to the 2 planning applications – the Horse application and the Gladman application – and the Village Green application on Hospital Field.

There have been literally 100s of emails flying to and fro between Sue, our legal adviser, Ian Bull (who is acting as our planning consultant), myself and to a lesser extent ABC and the Planning Inspectorate.

Since the last meeting Sue and I have had several discussions and meetings regarding these 3 topics. Counsel has recently been instructed to act on our behalf on all 3 matters. She has been recommended by, and is in chambers with, Richard Honey (former Ashford Borough Councillor for our Ward and barrister) who will be acting for ABC on the Gladman appeal. Richard Honey will also be advising her behind the scenes.

Both the Horse application and the Village Green application have significant effects on the Gladman appeal. The Horse application has recently been upheld on appeal and the Village Green application turned down by KCC. Our legal adviser has suggested these are both inconsistent and incorrect with procedural law, so we have instructed our Counsel to look into both cases and advise.

The above met in the 3rd week of September to discuss these matters and to look at the site.

Traffic and Highways issues will also be raised by both ABC and Brabourne PC.

We have also obtained permission from the Secretary of State to appear at the Gladman inquiry in our own right and our Counsel will be able to call witnesses, cross-examine, etc. However, this will be subordinate to Richard Honey’s involvement on behalf of ABC.

Although Counsel needs to get our arguments in to the Planning Inspectorate before the end of September, the appeal will not be heard until mid 2017.


Draft Local Plan

One site has been identified by Ashford Borough Council and included in the draft Local Plan – this is a site adjoining Peelers in Church Road, Smeeth. There are 4 other sites, also in Smeeth, that have been put forward by the owners or their agents, as “Omission Sites” in the draft Local Plan. These are Caldecott Foundation, The Paddocks, Main Road (Rep Number ALP/1842), Smeeth Playing Field and land adjacent (Rep Number ALP/2497), Hospital Field (Rep Number ALP/2704) and Old Builders Yard, Plain Road (Rep Number ALP/1862).

My sincere thanks go to Sue who has worked not only days but late evenings and weekends doing emails, collating documents, arranging meetings and God only knows what else! Without her I don’t know what we would do – very little I guess! Many thanks Sue!

Mike Hickmott, Chairman Brabourne Parish Council.