Developers of 1,650 home plan in Birchington urge residents to get in touch

The Birchington development site

The developers behind a 1,650 home plan for farmland at Birchington are appealing to residents to get in touch if they have questions.

The development is earmarked to take place on land off the Canterbury Road and is proposed by Ptarmigan Land and Millwood Designer Homes.

It is an outline planning proposal to build 1,650 homes, a primary school, shops, a 70 bed care home and a community park.

Aims to develop the site are contained in the Thanet Local Plan  a blueprint for housing, business and infrastructure on the isle up until 2031.

Birchington Parish Council has recently launched a leaflet, available at businesses in the village, to explain the proposal so people do not have to navigate their way through documents on Thanet council’s website.

Birchington development proposal

In response Millwood and Ptarmigan say residents can find all the planning paperwork, with clear explanations and a non technical outline, on their website. Ptarmigan also says there is a dedicated phone number and email that can be used for any queries or requests.

Olly Buck, from Ptarmigan Land, said:“Since October 2019 through to the middle of 2020 we engaged thoroughly with Birchington residents and a multitude of other local stakeholders in order to hear their views.

“We appreciate how complicated the planning process is , especially for large applications, and that is why we have gone the extra mile to ensure our engagement was as inclusive, transparent and productive as possible.  We were delighted with the level of participation in all our events over the last two years and the feedback really helped shape our final proposals.

“Our positive approach to engagement and transparency has not stopped following submission of our application to Thanet in December last year:

“To ensure the application is as accessible as possible, we have published all the relevant application documents on our website at:  www.SouthWestBirchingtonOnSea.co.uk/planning-application/  .

“Each planning document has a short explanation of its purpose and they are organised in a user-friendly manner.

“We have provide a non-technical summary of The Environmental Statement, making it easier to read and understand.

“We have provided a link to Thanet’s website where the public can comment on our proposals.

“We would like to assist anyone interested in the proposals if they feel that anything requires further explanation or clarification so if you have any questions about the application or where to find specific information please contact us.

“Our dedicated phone line and email – published on the website – have remained operational throughout the pandemic and are manned during office hours. If for some reason the phone isn’t answered then please leave us a voice message with your contact details.”

Contact details are: 0800 232 1794 or  info@SouthWestBirchingtonOnSea.co.uk

The development area

Birchington Parish Council says the planned development is such an important issue for the village that steps should be taken to better inform as many locals as possible through social media, social networks and more traditional print methods.

As part of the ‘Your Village, Your Voice, Your Say’ initiative the Parish Council has produced a short leaflet which sets out some key points from the planning application in easy to read language. The leaflet also explains how comments can be submitted during the consultation period. An eye-catching display dispenser has been designed so that the leaflet is easy to see and pick up.

Sixteen businesses in Birchington are supporting the initiative by having the leaflets and dispensers on display in their store.

The parish magazine, which includes an extensive article on the plans, is also being delivered to every home in the village.

A letter objecting to the plans has been sent to Thanet council by councillors George Kup (above) and Phil Fellows (below).

In it the Birchington representatives say there are questions over how an expanded medical centre and a school will be funded. They also say there are concerns over extra traffic and pollution and over who will maintain the green areas shown in the development proposal.

A petition was also raised by resident Gary Fowler questions why grade one land is being used when the development could instead incorporate grade 2 and 3 land further west.

Concerns over the increase in population, stretched medical services and the loss of countryside and paths have also been raised.

Read here:Planning application submitted for 1,650 home Birchington development

Read here: Birchington traders back parish council bid to highlight 1,650 home development plan

61 Comments

  1. Consequences of residents voting for an airport. As much as I don’t want extra development, airport voters need to suck it up or move (as those under the flight path have been told countless times).

    • What’s an “airport voter”? I’m in the Westgate/Birchington area, and I can’t recall ever voting for/against an airport, or even being asked.

      • The airport being referred to is Manston. There are plans to open it up as a cargo hub. Planes will blight the whole of east Kent including Westgate and Birchington with low flying aircraft, noise and associated pollution. Our local MPs , Craig MacKinlay (Thanet South) and Sir Roger Gale (Thanet North), both Conservative are all for it and they don’t even live in their constituencies.(Local elections are on 5th May by the way). Housing was earmarked for the disused Manston site. Thanet District Council’s local plan requires 1000s of homes to be built in Thanet. If they can’t go on the Manston site they have to go somewhere. The people of Ramsgate will be most affected with planes just 500ft above homes. Maybe a few houses on your doorstep doesn’t compare to the suffering we will endure?

        • I miss seeing the planes myself while walking/cycling around Thanet, but otherwise have no strong views either way (I can always go to Maypole!).

        • I could understand the moaning about flights if the numbers were comparable to those of Gatwick or Heathrow, nor do you hear the residents of Broadstairs that are under the flight path keep moaning and as for 5thousand houses being built in my area, no one in their right mind would consider them a few if a cargo plane should accidentally drop something on Ramsgate then you would have something serious to moan about but in the meantime please give it a rest it is so boring.

        • Sorry but If you don’t want to be under the flight path then move Thanet needs the airport for more job opportunities and the extra money it would bring in and I bet if they did holiday flights out of there you would be 1 of the people that would use them

          • “Then move.” You have probably no idea how irritating this thoughtless suggestion is. For how many years have airport supporters been using this ridiculous phrase?

      • It’s a tenuous link but:
        The people of Birchington voted for councillors who were pro airport;
        The TDC Local Plan was years out of date.
        A new Local Plan was tabled, but this did not reserve Manston as an airport, so a majority of councillors, including those voted in by Birchington voters, threw it out.
        A new Local Plan was devised, which prevented anything but aviation happening at Manston.
        So, 4000 houses that could have been built at Manston had to be built elsewhere, including Birchington .
        Ergo, the voters of Birchington brought about their own predicament.
        QED

        • I relate tou you comments, but please tell us all about all the infrastructure that will be required, and how it will happen, we all know the problems that Thanet has now with the lack of them.

        • Maybe many voted for these cllrs for other reasons? I voted for mine because he’s been very pro-active whenever there has been problems with rubbish, vandalism and illegal parking. Far more important to me than whether or not he supports the airport (something I don’t even know).

          • I seem to remember the airport and Brexit being the overriding themes of the elections, even having UKIP candidates darkening my doorstep stating this.

          • R. Girl, NO candidates bothered visiting my address, so I merely voted for someone who was already a Cllr and had proved highly helpful in the past (he was originally voted in before I lived in the area).

      • Airport supporters like Save Manston Airport Association are to blame. Along with news agencies that run their ads. Suck it up plane spotters!

  2. Get them built, people don’t want new builds in Westgate or Birchington when there is a shortage of housing in the UK. Maybe the developer could make it legal that these homes will only be available to first time buyers or those on low incomes as apposed to being sold to but to let and scum landlords just looking to make money.

    • developers help first time buyers? can’t see it myself developers are in it for themselves and only themselves not people on low incomes,not first time buyers only themselves as you have said there is a housing shortage in the UK and those being built in Thanet should go to Thanet people, not outsiders but locals. but that will not be the case either if London housing associations wave enough money in front of TDC that is who the houses will be given to so locals will never win.

  3. There are so many derelict buildings in the whole of Thanet why not upgrade then. Surely that could help in the short term and then further discussions could take place with all concerned. Let’s not blame the shortage of housing on one thing, this has been an ongoing thing for years

    • You can place the blame for the number of new houses being built in Thanet on one body. The government! They have admitted that the algorithm ( students can tell you about them ) put in place to allocate housing number requirements to an area was not fit for purpose, however thus far they have not rescinded it or corrected it.

    • But if they did, think of the extra income it would generate, and maybe, just maybe they could pass some of this on to the tax
      Payers, and either reduce the council tax increase, or put it to good use within the community.

      • Hilarious Paul please pick me up of f the floor TDC reduce taxes?at least there is one joker out there,sorry have got to go can’t stop laughing.

    • know the feeling, TDC do not want objections it is so they can push through any plans submitted without them then they can say well no one objected objections by letter are also being ignored I am sure they must be breaking the law somewhere on this and I intend to find out what can be done to stop this farce of blocking objection from the public people are entitled to air their views on something that could affect them

  4. Last figures available from the Government stated there are 2435 empty properties in Thanet. Some 4% of the total number of properties.

    This is the worst figure in Kent and is the joint 3rd worst percentage in the entire country.

    Certainly seems to be some scope there to improve things before building hundreds more on open farmland.

  5. Rest assured these houses are not being built for the people of Birchington.These properties will be bought and occupied by people from outside of the parish who already own a house and who have good jobs. There are no jobs in Thanet so why would people who live hear buy a house here. At the end of the day when all of the grade one arable land in Thanet has been developed, the housing shortage will be as bad as it is now. Just look at the vast array of housing being built at this moment in Nash Lane and Westwood. The house builders don’t make their money from building affordable homes.

    • You can lay the blame squarely on Thatcher’s shoulders.
      She put into people’s minds the notion that if you weren’t on the “property ladder” you were a nobody; and to facilitate this new craze she’d just invented she brought in the “Right to Buy” scheme, which within a few years more ir less completely scuppered any local authority social/rented housing.
      Nowadays, if LAs want to hang on to social housing they’ve built, they have to create 3rd party companies which own the houses; for some strange reason, only houses owned by LAs and Housing Associations is eligible for RtB; privately owned homes are not.

      • Good idea. If a government(obviously not this one)were to give tenants of privately-owned houses the Right to Buy them, possibly offsetting the cost by including the rent money already spent on them, fewer private individuals and companies would buy up the houses. So only owner-occupiers would live in them.
        We would sill have the houses available but the ownership would be much fairer.
        If some individuals have enough money to buy several houses , and others cannot afford just one, then we have a completely unbalanced housing system. And we need to change it.
        Obviously, the current government won’t change any of this. Too busy reducing the rate-support grant so the County Council has to raise the rates to keep going.

  6. Thanet has become increasingly overpopulated over the past few years … surely, with a strain already, on the infrastructure of this small area of land, it’s time to call a halt on the continuous redevelopment schemes on this tiny isle !!!

  7. To all those on here who suffer from tunnel vision they want to open their eyes. This development is not a “must have”
    It’s greedy farmers and developers planning laughing all the way to the bank. Manston Airport reopening is the best thing that could happen and the government / owners of the airport will succeed in achieving the aim. To think if houses were built on Manston airport no other developments in the area would take place is ridiculous way of thinking.
    All one hears from the anti Airport sado’s is moan moan moan. The Airport has been there longer than the moaners.
    Also the reopening of the airport will send many greedy developers ideas where they belong in the bin.
    Manston Airport is going to reopen get used to it.k

  8. How happy I am to be an “anti-airport sado” (sic)! I can bask in the moral warmth of knowing that my opinions about aviation are endorsed by reputable scientists and not dodgy companies that nobody’s ever heard of before.

    • you can’t honestly believe every thing scientists tell you they will answer according to who is asking the question

      • KB- why on earth would scientists vary their answer “according to who is asking the question” ? A fact’s a fact , whoever it is you’re explaining it to.

      • Give an example or two to support your hypothesis.
        I can imagine what you say being true of used car salesmen and politicians, but not scientists.
        You see, a scientist reaches a conclusion by carrying out experiments, observing the data, and synthesizing a solution. For cutting edge research into new fields, that data will be shared with other scientists from other institutions, and they will replicate the experiments and confirm the results (or not, as the case may be).
        So, I’m at a loss as to how you can think that scientists just make up answers to suit the occasion.

  9. Maybe the answer is to build a dozen Arlington House style buildings in Margate, as whenever I criticise it everyone tells me how wonderful it is!

      • You can dress it up as cocky but I couldn’t care less.

        After the years of threat to Ramsgate from a bunch of failed aviators it’s the least I can say. The shocking way in which Ramsgate has been neglected for consideration in respect of a monstrous cargo hub beggars belief and we will not be a soft touch.

        Anti housing sentiment explains half the support and sentiment over evidence explains the other. All washed down with MP ego. X 2.

        Nobody gave two stuffs about our air quality, horrific noise disturbance or inability to enjoy our harbour or our outdoor space without a huge old cargo boiler rumbling in directly over our town at 500 feet every 12 mins. As a consequence of the obsession by a few, TDC forced through another revision of the local plan so past its delivery day the government had to intervene and I’m quite sure HM Gov have seen through the blatant aviation protection by a few which blights so many.

        We say no. Ramsgate says no.

        Houses will now arrive, in their thousands. On the green belt and in our villages.

        It could have been so different.

        • The noise those planes made over the harbour was bloody terrifying. I simply don’t believe anybody who says they were never bothered by the noise of planes when Manston actually was an airport.

  10. Ann, the DCO has been quashed.

    Grant now has to decide if we wants to try and recobble his homework or just give it up totally. If Grant can find evidence of need, viability and benefit now, when he couldn’t before, then I’m then Queen of Sheba.

    You see, an outcome letter saying ‘yeh but no but yeh but there are benefits but we can’t list ANY’ just isn’t going to fly.

    A bit like cargo planes at the defunct airfield.

  11. As a long time reader and contributor to these virtual pages, I long ago realised that you can’t make a reasoned argument and expect a reasoned reply (though it doesn’t stop me trying)
    It was Michael Chilďs who said “if someone insists that the sky is green, and you take them outside, point to the blue ske and ask them ‘what colour?’ and they reply ‘green’s there’s not a lot more to be done.”

    • no they do not John only recently I have read that one developer in Thanet asked if they could reduce the number of affordable homes that was agreed because the y were not going to make any money on them.

      • It’s the proposed site to the rear of Salmonstone Grange in Margate.The last I’ve seen is that TDC was considering then.I think you can rely similar things happening in Birchington after all the developers have already moved the goalposts by adding 50 houses over and above the original plans.

  12. Andrew, it depends what time of day one looks at the sky. Unicorn The DCO was not quashed it was withdrawn for good reason, there is going to be a change in the law that will stop small groups of people trying to undermine democracy by using the courts and judicial reviews for their own ends. Manston Airport will be reopening. Liam. Bless you, yes I’m still up and running swimming 40 lengths a day.

    • The law is what the law is. Currently, decisions taken by the government can be challenged by JR.
      In this case, an application for a JR was put to the court; the court decided it had merit, the application was granted and a hearing date fixed.
      Long before the hearing, the Treasury Solicitor writing on behalf of the SoS conceded that the SoS’s reasons for overturning the Inspectorate’s decision not to grant a DCO were inadequate.
      At the same time, RSP indicated it would not defend its case.
      So, since no evidence will be presented by the SoS and RSP, the DCO is effectively quashed.
      The DCO was only withdrawn when the JR was raised. If the DCO had legs, why not let it run?

    • Have you ever looked at a clearly blue (as in cobalt, azure, aquamarine) sky and said “Nope! That sky is green”?

    • Hi Ann: I’ll put this in black and white, for the benefit of the chromatically challenged.
      Originally, ROIC approached Iris Johnson (Lab) with a view to being partners in a CPO on Manston. Iris was up for it: she wore the tee shirt.
      But ROIC was not able to demonstrate that they would be able to come up with the goods, so the idea was dropped.
      Then, with a change of administration ROIC attempted to enter into a CPO partnership with the new UKIP administration. Remember that UKIP had Manston at the top of its agenda. But hardly had the Leader’s chair got warm than Chris Wells realised that ROIC’s plans were not up to scratch. So UKIP dropped the idea, too
      Not to be denied access to hundreds of acres of prime development land in the SE, ROIC launched a DCO.
      As the process trundle on, ROIC became RSP (they forgot to tell the ExA).
      After a year of taking evidence, the PI decided not to recommend a DCO. They did so robustly, for a number of reasons.
      Now, if RSP’s scheme was so scintillating brilliant, why did it go bust in the first place?
      Why did two TDCs reject the CPO venture?
      Why was Manston not selected by the Davies Commission?
      Why did every expert report say that a) there was no unmet demand, and b) if there was, Manston was in the wrong place to meet it?
      Why, after a year of detailed evidence, did the PI reccomend not to grant a DCO?
      You think the sky is not blue. You think that Manston Airport will reopen.
      Yeah.

  13. Manston has no airport. It has a brownfield site which should ideally be used for housing, clean industries and open space for walks, sport and recreation and as much wildlife as possible.

    Whose ends should judicial reviews be used for? Why not for small groups?

  14. Besides, the government’s desire to limit democracy by restraining judicial reviews is clearly an act of spite.

    The newspaper article I read said that such restraints would not apply to people with a direct interest in the subject of the JR.

  15. Ann, by small groups do you mean the most contested DCO in the history of the planning act? That kinda gigantic small?

    Who told you the law was being changed for a defunct old airstrip? Roger and his Lekky Barges.con?

  16. This is great for the developers. Your all arguing about Manston airport. Don’t you think they would build on both. Manston is and will be an airport working or not. Everyone will by the new houses whether planes fly or not. Stop arguing about Manston and join forces against the deveopers

    • How can anywhere be “an airport working or not”, even if it was an airport at some time in the past? If it’s not a working airport now, then it just isn’t an airport. It’s not like, say, Corfe Castle, which is now still a castle,even in ruins.

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