Fresh application submitted for Extra Care scheme and housing at Jentex site in Cliffsend

The Jentex site Image via planning documents

An outline planning application for a 61 unit extra care scheme, 14 retirement bungalows, 34 houses and 8 maisonettes at the Jentex oil storage plant in Cliffsend has been submitted to Thanet council.

The scheme would mean the removal of the remaining two tanks, out of six originally at the site, to make way for the housing scheme.

The extra care building would also contain a shop, cafe and community meeting room which will be available for use by the whole community.

A design statement from site owner Anthony Jenkins says the aim is: “to provide a ‘legacy’ for the residents of Cliffsend.”

Currently seven people are employed on the site. The proposals will provide circa 40 jobs for local people.

Thirty per cent of properties will be allocated as affordable homes.

There is a current outline consent for 56 Extra Care units, and 56 other dwellings on the site. The new application increases the housing and moves the extra care building to a flatter part of the site. It also increases parking spaces and simplifies the road layout.

How the extra care facility could look Image via planning documents

The design document says: “The applicants have run their business from the depot site for many years but it is now surplus to requirements.  The applicants’ wish is that, once the business has moved, the site will provide a legacy to benefit Cliffsend, and redevelopment or sale of the site for continued industrial/storage use does not meet these aspirations.

“After lengthy consideration and local consultation (in 2015) the applicants decided that they wished to use the site to meet a very clearly identified need for housing and in particular for older people in the village and the surrounding area. This is the primary focus of the proposal and was shown to be highly popular with local residents during the consultation event.

“An additional important part of the concept is to create facilities for the provision of ‘outreach services’ to older people in the area who wish to continue living in their own homes. Such services are vital to large numbers of older people.”

Image of housing via planning documents

A communal minibus service would be provided, to assist with access to local services and facilities, as well as nearby village and town centres. This service will be offered to all occupiers of the Extra Care facility, as well as occupiers of housing within the remainder of the site, and also to the wider community.”

Previous investigation via bore holes show ‘little’ contamination, meaning the site is suitable for remediation, says project planning consultant John Elvidge.

The changes in the layout of the scheme come after discussions since the original proposal grant in 2015 failed to come to fruition.

Some 30 mixed use and/or extra care housing providers were approached during 2016-17 but only Orbit, Housing and Care 21, and Keepmoat eventually expressed a substantive interest.

However the original layout was not considered viable. There were also issues over the uncertainty related to the Manston airport site and a flux in the housing association market.

In a planning statement Mr Elvidge states: “It (the altered proposal) requires further expenditure and a renewed effort while Manston’s future still hangs in the air, but the applicant recognises that projects of this type are rarely straightforward and he has no intention of giving up.

Image via planning documents

“He has also assessed and taken some encouragement from potentially positive signs elsewhere that there is yet a market to be won, a need to fulfil and therefore a case to be made for a further consent.

“The social housing sector has attracted transformational levels of investment in the last 3 years and this is now just beginning to percolate into Extra Care Housing and into mixed housing projects of this type with strong ‘social content’. This provides the applicant with renewed opportunity and optimism.”

Contamination report

Historic plans show that the site was open farmland until 1961 when a number of large circular sewerage tanks were constructed. Between 1972 and 1975 an oil storage depot was built on the site. Further tanks were constructed until at least 2002, however three were removed by 2010.

A contamination investigation in 2015 concluded: “The investigations demonstrate that the former uses of the site have resulted in mild contamination by polyaromatic hydrocarbons and asbestos (with respect to human health). No significant soil based source of groundwater contamination has been identified.”

It adds: “Further investigation is required beneath residual tanks and below the area of the active Environmental Permit. This investigation is only possible once these have been fully decommissioned and overhead power lines etc. removed to permit access.”

The fresh application was submitted to Thanet council last month and validated on September 12. A decision is yet to be made.


RiverOak Strategic Partners (RSP) has announced the completion of the acquisition of the Jentex site today (September 18).

The site is designated in RSP proposals as the location of its airport fuel facility.

The Jenkins family, which has operated the site for many years as a fuel oil business, will continue to do so until the conclusion of the Development Consent Order submitted to central government. If the DCO, to compulsory purchase the Manston airport site, is successful Jentex will become the operators of the new fuel facility.

Read more here


  1. Well, I am not sure how this application sits with the claim made at the RSP consultations by Niall Lawlor, that he had “bought the Jentex site”?

  2. Not a good idea. They will be under the flight path of Manston Airport when it reopens. In any event others want to buy that site and if it is given planning permission it will just inflate the price.

  3. This is exactly the sort of “brownfield” site (disused or surplus to requirements) that should be used as some form of housing development – rather than sacrificing undeveloped, open land and other “greenfield” areas. There are plenty of other, similar pockets of land around the Isle that could be similarly redeveloped.

  4. Dream on Ann and look up the plans for the Manston Grreen site which nearly reaches the boundary of the old runway, and also has a government grant for the new planned roundabout..

    • “Dave”, the Manston Green site ought never to have received planning permission by TDC by the last Administration and the reality is that it is unlikely to proceed, now.

      Construction of Manston Green hasn’t yet been started, nothing has been erected on the site, and any homes built there now must conform to standards that would apply in such close proximity to the airport runway. If the developers want to go to the banks or the markets for funding for the development, then will such investors be wise to commit their money to that? The developers will get NO compensation for what they do now to adapt their plans by putting in highly dense forms of loft soundproofing, triple glazing, perhaps alterations in roof options, etc., all needed because all what they’ve sought or would like to do has occurred while the airport’s regeneration and return to active use has been in contemplation by everyone. So their costs will go up, the time required to conform to what they need to do, and the unattractiveness of the site to potential subdivision developers and to potential purchasers of any homes built there (thus reductions in house prices and probably increases in marketing costs) cannot be laid at RiverOak’s door but does fall to the promoter of Manston Green who previously obviously accepted that risk. Those who willingly put themselves in harm’s way (rather like stepping in front of a train that’s in motion) won’t get compensation when they get run over!

      Manston Green won’t stop the airport’s redevelopment as a Nationally Significant Infrastructure Project. The best use for the Manston Green site is for it to remain in use as grade one agricultural land.

      Can TDC be held liable if it can be proved that they misled the developers and offered them “professional” advice that RiverOak could not possibly succeed in gaining a development consent order to compulsorily acquire and redevelop the the airport? Well, possibly yes, and it is clear from TDC officers’ recommendations that not one word about the proximity of the airport or the likelihood of its reopening appears in advice given to the Planning Committee of the Council, but the awareness of the Council, the Planning Committee, the public and the developer that RiverOak was determined to succeed was absolutely clear.

      The pretty brochures that the developers prepared to show what their proposed housing estate would look like carefully missed out the airport on its borders. The developers, as businessmen, must bear at least some if not all of the risks they so obviously took on in hopes of making a great deal of money.

  5. Great idea.Good use of brownfield site for much needed affordable accommodation for our elderly. But whoever is putting in the plans needs to remember to write this on their PINS for the Cargohub. Lots of great reasons here not to have the cargohub.

  6. It will be interesting to see what recommendations are made by the Head of Planning, Iain Livingstone, and the Senior Management Team at Thanet District Council, having regard to the changes made to the Draft Local Plan by the new Administration (now out for Public Consultation), and the fact that the Manston DCO has now progressed to the Pre-Examination stage (against a backdrop that no Transport DCO and only 3 other DCOs have ever been refused development consent.

    It is also worth noting that no grant of development consent has ever been reversed by judicial review or by Parliament.

    On this basis, the Manston DCO Proposal, which most unusually enjoys exceptionally high levels of public approval, is most likely to be successful. That would include this land within the Development Consent Order and preclude or override this TDC Planning Application.

    Will TDC’s Head of Planning reverse his position in relation to the adequacy of RiverOak’s statutory consultation? Will he appreciate that even the highest levels of public objections to other Development Consent Applications have been unsuccessful in derailing them?

    The sensible option, of course, would be for the Head of Planning at TDC to advise the Applicant and the Planning Committee to agree to defer consideration of this Application by TDC until the recommendations of the Examining Authority are known following the conclusion of the Examination stage of the DCO. Even at present, however, the almost certain outcome of RiverOak DCO Application is that it will succeed and that the regeneration of the airport will then begin on a scale never before seen in Thanet.

    • Do you only talk to people you know will agree with you? The RSP proposal is not nearly as popular as you think it is.

  7. Hang on..’Extra Care units’..potentially juxta postion cargo runway??

    TDC …step up now and make valid decisions…please. Bizarre!!

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