‘Out­ra­geous’ ap­pli­ca­tion thrown out

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Mixed Fortunes For Luxury Hotel -

An ap­pli­ca­tion for more housing in Char­ing has been thrown out by coun­cil­lors.

The pro­posal by Glad­man De­vel­op­ments was for 245 new houses on land south of the rail­way line and west of Pluck­ley Road, as well as land­scap­ing, pub­lic open space and a chil­dren’s play area.

At Ash­ford Bor­ough Coun­cil’s plan­ning com­mit­tee meet­ing last week, coun­cil­lors unan­i­mously agreed to re­ject the pro­posal.

The pub­lic gallery at Ash­ford Civic Cen­tre was full as res­i­dents urged mem­ber to re­ject the ap­pli­ca­tion.

Char­ing Par­ish Coun­cil chair­man Jill Ley­land, said: “This is a frankly out­ra­geous ap­pli­ca­tion. We fully ac­cept we have to play our part in Ash­ford’s de­vel­op­ments but by how much?

“The de­vel­op­ment would be be­yond easy walk­ing dis­tance so most peo­ple would likely drive into the vil­lage.” She added: “It would be a chal­lenge to both the in­fra­struc­ture and fa­cil­i­ties in Char­ing and the speed cush­ion­ing is a lu­di­crous idea.

“We urge you to ob­ject in the strong­est pos­si­ble terms.”

Coun­cil leader Gerry Clark­son, who rep­re­sents Char­ing, also sup­ported the re­fusal of the ap­pli­ca­tion.

He said: “This site has never be­fore been con­sid­ered for such a de­vel­op­ment.

“It’s in the wrong lo­ca­tion which could be ex­tremely dam­ag­ing; it is a sprawl­ing de­vel­op­ment that would de­stroy the his­tory and beauty.”

He con­tin­ued: “This is one of the worst sites in Char­ing for the de­vel­op­ment.

“We need to take rea­son­able mea­sures with fu­ture de­vel­op­ment and make sure the de­vel­op­ment is of ap­pro­pri­ate size, de­sign and lo­ca­tion.”

An­other is­sue high­lighted by Cllr Brad Brad­ford, among others, was that KCC High­ways and Transport had pre­vi­ously ob­jected to the de­vel­op­ment.

Cllr Brad­ford said: “KCC High­ways and Transport ob­jected to the ap­pli­ca­tion, par­tially on the grounds that ‘the pedes­trian links are un­ac­cept­able and the de­vel­op­ment would be harm­ful to pedes­trian safety’. It would be a very brave plan­ning com­mit­tee to ig­nore that com­ment.”

ANGER: Coun­cil chair­man Jill Ley­land

RE­FUSAL: Coun­cil leader Gerry Clark­son

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