Virtual meeting to hear about amended plans for housing at Westwood Lodge

Amended plans for Westwood Lodge

An online meeting will be held to share updated plans for the development of 153 homes at the Westwood Lodge site in Poorhole Lane.

L&G Modular Homes have taken over the scheme and made a series of amendments to areas including moving new builds further away from the existing buildings and retaining more of the trees onsite.

Outline planning permission for the development, which is private land, was granted by appeal in 2017. The original application in 2015 was rejected by Thanet council for reasons including concern at additional pressure on Sandwich Bay protection area and “a significant incursion of the built form into the green wedge.”

The Planning Inspectorate decision overturning Thanet council’s case said it was weakened by a lack of a 5 year housing supply plan and “as the woodland visible along the northern and eastern site boundaries would be largely retained its distinctive landscape qualities would not be prejudiced.”

The Grade II listed main house of Westwood Lodge, built in 1864, the 17th Century cottage and the gate piers will remain intact on the site.

Former developer applicant Places For People Homes Ltd pulled out of the scheme last year. During the second half of 2020 Rooksmead Residential Ltd agreed terms with L&G Modular Homes on a revised set of proposals.

An amended layout and detail with regard to the appearance, landscaping, and scale of the new development has since been submitted.

Documents for the amended plans say: “The scheme has been developed with the heritage constraints in mind and has sought to preserve the immediate setting of the grade II listed main house and associated gate piers, as well as The Cottage.”


The main changes are

  • More of the established landscape structure, with internal woodlands creating three discreet clearings to the north, appears to be retained. These landscape buffers break the proposed development into three smaller sections, thereby limiting the overall visual impact as perceived from any one view and have the effect of moving the central ‘block’ of development further away from any more direct views from the terrace of Westwood Lodge;
  • The layout has a more informal feel than the perimeter blocks, with buildings grouped in longer terraces, thereby minimising any busy visual clutter which might distract from the setting of Westwood Lodge more generally;
  • More of the historic carriage drive has been retained, with the new estate road using only a small section at the ‘spur’ with the service drive before crossing through the woodland to the new perimeter road further north. The crossing point lies substantially further west, away from Westwood Lodge, thereby protecting a greater proportion of its setting
  • Whereas the new buildings closest to Westwood Lodge were three full stories with prominent gables, the orientation of the roofscapes have been rotated with rear pitches backing onto the new road layout, presenting a more recessive form of development onto the retained  setting of the assets.

No formal boundary is proposed between the new development and Westwood Lodge. This will remain as existing, with the boundary will be formed by existing trees, in order to protect the setting of the current building.

The listed entrance gates will be retained and opened up to pedestrian access along the carriage drive.

‘Zombie’ protest at Poorhole Lane Photo Carl Hudson

In February last year the Thanet Trees group held a protest at the site asking for halt in works for full ecology surveys, approval of planning conditions and for more information to be shared about a rumoured burial pit.

The group had concerns for birds, bats, slow worms and reptiles.

A statement in the amended plans says: “The Westwood Lodge Estate represents a sizeable landholding requiring considerable capital to invest in maintenance and repairs.

Some of the buildings appear to have fallen into disuse and much of the walled garden is overgrown. Consideration may therefore be given to whether any broader conservation benefits may arise from the reuse of the buildings and spaces, such as the Coach House and walled gardens.

“As appropriate, there may also be further potential for restoration of some of the features, including the historic metal fencing along Sloe Lane, reinstatement of iron railings at the entrance drive, and repairs to the balustrade of Westwood Lodge’s terrace, though these would not necessarily be predicated on the proposed development of the site.”

L&G Modular Homes will host the virtual meeting on Tuesday, February 16 at 7pm.

Anyone who would like to attend is asked to email [email protected] and a link to the meeting will be sent.

Find the amended plans on Thanet council’s planning portal under reference R/TH/20/0174

Westwood Lodge history

Image Orion

Westwood Lodge was built in 1864 as a holiday retreat for Spencer Herepath, a Kensington stockbroker whose firm specialised in South American Railway securities.

The architect is not at present known but there is speculation that it could have been Henry Winnock Hayward (1825-1893) who had built houses of a similar style in Phillimore Place, Kensington near Herepath’s London residence.

Image Thanet Trees

Herepath’s daughter Marion married Linley Sambourne, the celebrated Punch illustrator, in 1874. After Spencer Herepath died in 1884, Mrs Herepath lived there until the property was sold in 1893.

The next owner was Harry Rickards (1841-1911), a celebrated music hall artist who became a music hall impresario in both England and Australia. This was his English estate. By 1911 he was considered probably the largest single-handed music hall manager and proprietor in the world. Subsequent owners were the Farrell family. The property has been in continuous ownership by one family from 1948 until the present day. From 1929 the estate was used for farming and market gardening.

The entrance piers, gates and wall to Westwood Lodge were built circa 1865 in Gothic style.

Image Orion

The 17th century flint cottage is possibly listed as no 599 on sheet 2 of the Tithe Apportionment of 1838 for St Peter’s and Broadstairs, a house and garden owned and occupied by Mary Packer, connected with three arable fields. After 1865 it came into the same ownership as Westwood Lodge.


  1. Haven’t we got enough houses being built at Westwood just so people with money can come and live here, how many of these properties have been for local people on housing list? if all these houses being put up was social then our list waiting for housing would be halved, to me this is scandalous to allow all this increase at westwood in an area that is already gridlocked (when we are not in lockdown)

    • Given the choice, I’d rather they build here than elsewhere in Thanet, as they won’t have to drive for miles to the shops!

        • My old doorstep or my current one? I don’t thing there’s space outside my old one in Peckham, and as my current one faces the sea that might be difficult too!

          • You certainly move around a lot Peter, not that that is anyone’s business but your own, just my observation tells me each time you make a comment you put yourself living in a different location.

            I admire your spirit on most things but would not want anymore homes forced on Westwood, Birchington or Westgate as this is eroding the village life as we knew it and causes traffic jams all over without any decent new roads. It seems there could be a plan being drawn up for even more homes near Cliffsend for the Manston station they have given the go ahead to as well.

            Thanet is only a small enclosed area but already we see thousands of new homes being built and many more in the planning which has closed up the green corridors between the towns. Westwood was the last substantial wooded area in Thanet and the lungs of the Westwood area. There is shortly going to be very few mature trees and little wildlife left on the Isle of Thanet as within just a few more years at this rate it’s going to be jammed solid with homes, vehicles and people.

            TDC need to take notice from KCC and stand up to these developers instead of allowing everything and anything development wise. TDC should have appealed the Planning Inspectorate decision at the time.
            Boris has already stated last December he does not want to see over-development in the South-East of England which is happening, but to encourage building homes elsewhere in the Country. TDC seem to have missed that or have conveniently ignored it, as long as money is coming in they don’t care where it’s from. But, instead of thousands of extra unaffordable homes being built on greenfield and agricultural sites they should concentrate on redeveloping the brownfield sites. It should not cost them any more, it’s just developers want the convenience to make their ££ millions by having nothing to clear first and larger sites all in one place. Easy bucks for them.

            What is this once beautiful area in the Kent Garden Of England going to be like for future generations because of our local authority’s maladministration now? I hate to think.

          • To clarify “Kent Resident” (who doesn’t even give a name, let alone mention where he/she lives), I’m in Westgate-on-Sea but will shortly be moving to Birchington-on-Sea (and also lived in Garlinge from 1987-1990 and Westbrook from 1999-2018). OK?

            Yes, I’m against building ANY more houses in Thanet, BUT, I believe that Westwood Cross is a more suitable location than Westgate-on-Sea, Birchington-on-Sea, Cliffsend, Manston, Minster in Thanet or St. Nicholas-at-Wade (not sure how this makes me a NIMBY, but Ms. Angry doesn’t seem capable of calm discussion).

          • …and I mentioned Peckham as Lesley referred to me in a (deleted) post as a “DFL”. I haven’t lived there since 1985 though! Been in Thanet or Herne Bay ever since.

      • This road is already GRIDLOCKED and this is BEFORE they build and in lockdown!!! We have so little green spaces….how on Earth can anyone endorse this… is BAD PLANNING at it’s best.

    • You need to ask this government why not much social housing is being built.
      It’s probably linked to the “right to buy” scheme introduced by Mrs Thatcher.
      There’s not much incentive for LAs to build social housing, just to see it flogged off cheaply to tenants, who then flog it off to buy-to-let landl8rds, who rent it out expensively.

        • Surely it is more environmentally sound to build houses next to a large shopping centre than miles from anyway? Oh, and please try to respond without going into one.

          • Nimby I will go in to one if I want because you obviously have no respect for other peoples lives as I believe I have suggested before you visit Westwood to see what destruction has taken place there but you like many others are not interested because it does not affect you People, Lord how I hate them

          • Mrs. Unappealing, I’ve been to Westwood Cross twice in the past year… which I’m guessing is 2 times more than you’ve been to St. Nicholas, Cliffsend, Littlebourne, Woodnesborough or any other place threatened by a sudden influx of housing that I’ve also been to.

        • If you read and study the plans theses houses are the most forward thinking environmentally and ecological houses to ever to be built .. but I do t think that people read through the small print and just read 153 houses .. I love to be first on the list to try and buy one .. nowhere else in Thanet could buy a house that is going to have so much woodland around you .. I’d love to live in that little haven❤️

          • It certainly looks more appealing than most new developments (love the fact they’re also keeping the old buildings and some woodland).

          • I’d love you not to don’t you understand the damage this pile of crap will do to the environment?the trees will not be there and saplings do will nothing to help keep the air clean it is mature trees that do the work but hey you keep on dreaming about living in your little haven selfish does not describe people like you who want to see natural habitats destroyed jog on and buy somewhere else oh sorry you can’t do that because theses grounds are the last of there type in the Westwood area

      • The tenant that bought with the discount benefitted from the scheme and the social mobility it offered. That when they sold the best offers they received were from BTL landlords only reflects the lack of appeal of living amongst social housing to owner occupiers. As for the cost of the housing, Social housing is famously mismanaged ( grenfell and lakanal house being prime examples ( the reonse from government would be very different if these had occured in the private rented sector)) extraordinarily wasteful and needs loads of hidden subsidies. Its the council taxpayer that will pay the pensions of the councils housing staff not the tenants in the rent.
        Then private landlords pay tax, both income and capital gains. If i ever win euromillions i’ll pay a research team to look at the true cost of both the social and private rented sector.

        • When there was plenty of social housing- before that immoral Right To Buy was mane law- council house tenants were NOT only those who were desperately poor/ feckless/dug addicts/alcoholics/mentally ill. LC are you too young to remember the time before Right To Buy. or are you just a Thatcherite snob? The type who thinks people who use public transport are second-class citizens?

          • Not at all, my grandparents were eternally gratefull to have the chance to raise their children in a council property ,( one of my earliest memories is cutting brussell sprouts with my grandfather in his garden around 1969,does that make me old enough) however they were also able to understand that when the time came they would downsize to flat and so the house be available to another family. They treated like it was their own and appreciated what it gave to them in terms of standard of living.
            That ethos is very uncommon these days, a good friends parents scrimped and saved to buy their council house, then watched the estate fall apart around them, tried to sell for years and only escaped when a housing association bought it.
            The move to needs based allocation of social housing was the point at which council estates went down hill as it slowly filled them with those that had/have a very different mindset.
            (Grandparents from council estate, parents bought own home, i passed 11 plus , local council put me into a grammar school as part of their intake choice, left at 18,vworked as a builders labourer 3 days later, worked just about ever since) social mobility or thatcherite priveledge? Work has taken me far and wide (0ver 40 different countries) met allsorts of people from government ministers in Oman to Bangladeshi labourers in egypt, a amn who’s son died in a fight over a £5 whore in brazil but was at work the next day to pay for the funeral, a mechanic in the philipines who was indebted for the forseeable future to family members that paid for his sons lifesaving operation, all the expats on the site made sure he got all the overtime he wanted. Invited to eat with labourers families in west africa where the mud huts were cleaner than many benfit recipients homes i’ve seen. Racism between different ethnic groups that means the difference between life and death in africa. A common theme where ever i’ve been , that england is seen as a country of great opportunity and fairness , free healthcare is seen as an unbelievable thing .
            I feel i have enough life experience to have formed a view. Far too many criticise from a postion of ignorance.

    • Yes they have Maym and I doubt very few are for local people on the housing list ,in fact when this proposal first came up one pathetic woman from Broadstairs thought the planned houses would be good idea it meant if she could sell her house and move to a gated estate snobbery, stupidity, or what?

          • Why your (albeit garbled) “gated estate snobbery” post then? I’m assuming you’re against gated properties for some obscure reason, or did I misunderstand?

        • So Mr know it all you are a covid rule breaker too out twice in the last year we do not need cocky rule breakers from London we have enough of our own and you have the nerve to tell every one you have had a test done it’s the least you could do having broken the rules.

          • How am I a rule breaker when current restrictions have only been around for a couple of months and I’ve been to places within the past TWELVE months? You’re not making any sense whatsoever.

          • In between lockdowns I actually went to Cliftonville twice by bus but of course that does not make me a “Covid rule breaker” any more than it makes Peter Checksfield one by visiting Westwood Cross twice.

          • Thank you Marva. I also went on a coach trip to Rye in October, but that wasn’t against the rules either, nor were my summer walks in the Deal/Dover area, couple of visits to the Carlton cinema and dozen or so meals out in Thanet’s finest restaurants and pubs!

        • it is not environmentally sound to cut down trees and kill any living thing for the sake of it just so outsiders can have somewhere to live and we have been under lockdown for the last year so unless you have been out for essentials you have broken the law as has anyone else that’s been out to a pub or restaurant as far as people know you could be a covid spreader even though you’ve had a test not a jab but a test oh thank you Marva you are my new bestie

          • HS2 is destroying untold millions of tree years in until now undistiurbed ancient woodlands, habitats destroyed that will never be replaced, the species that called it home are hardly likely the 200 years it will take for planted saplings to mature.
            Westwood, Northwood, Southwood, there’s a clue in the names as to how Thanet once looked, Moses shipyard was likely the demise of those.
            What we have today is little more than long living weeds by comparison.

      • A desire to live somewhere they feel safer? I used to work with lots of south africans, once they had a wife and kids if they couldn’t afford to live in a gated complex with security , they gave up contracting and stayed at home or moved to another country. Different scales of worry but same underlying desire.

        • How does owning your home improve social mobility?

          Without the right to buy, councils would still have plenty of housing. As their housing stock has been very much diminished over the years-money from selling their stock was not allowed to be used by councils for replacement homes- councils naturally had to use what was left of it to house the most vulnerable members of society.

          • The tenants bought at a discount, this gave them equity in their property and put them on the property ladder, they then had far more choice in their future, they could sell and move at will , rather than be tied into whatever their housing provider might off or swap they could arrange. That sort of social mobility.
            Social housing gained its current reputation when normal working people on reasonable incomes were no longer elegible and the estates were filled with those who tend to be more problematic. Instead of balanced communities you ended up with dysfunctional ones. Obviously this doesn’t apply to all the residents but it only takes a few extra bad apples to bring an area down, just look at cliftonville a dumping ground for lifes less fortunate for too many years and it shows.

    • As this land has previously been almost completely unavailable for public use, it seems as good a place as any to build housing.

      I hope the virtual meeting on Tuesday will not be overwhelmed by members of “Thanet Trees.”

    • Lesley Peeling.
      I can’t help feeling sorry for somebody who’s been stuck at home for a year-but to say “Bring on the jetskis” when you know what a risk they pose to swimmers and indeed other beach users just makes you look like a heartless prat.

      • I do not need or want your sympathy stuff it where the sun does not shine look in the mirror Marva there’s the prat looking back oh sorry the mirror cracked name calling are we ?just shut the chuck up

  2. Why not develop the brown field sites first ?
    ok its a nice local envelope of land and a housing estate will eventually be built,

  3. This article has made me so darned angry no ones objections by letter have been taken in to account now the poxy council are doing a virtual meeting to discuss the amended plans which means anyone unable to do this will again be shut out, the people that have owned W L over the years have let the property fall into disrepair and now want to blight local peoples lives with a tacky estate tat will only benefit them the whole thing is a whitewash and it stinks

          • as I have said before London is a shite hole that most DFLs have escaped from and I have visited manty times, sadly always came back feeling filthy and a nose blocked by so much filth it was an unbelievable disgusting place and as for it being greener I can understand that because people like you have moved to Thanet to destroy what greenery we have by building houses on it you have left Peckham to go back to being green

          • And as I’ve said before, please moderate your language. There’s no need for it.

            Peckham Rye Common (and the nearby Peckham Rye Park), is a vast, beautiful place, and within walking distance is the stunning Dulwich Park, recently restored to its original Victorian splendor. Go treat yourself when Covid restrictions ease, you’ll be pleasantly surprised!

  4. I don’t think Lesley Peeling can be all that familiar with London otherwise she would know how varied, interesting and in many places beautiful it is.

    • I can honestly say that parts of Thanet are filthier than anywhere I’ve seen in London. Even the rough parts of London appear to have their streets swept regularly, and there’s largely a zero tolerance to such anti-socia behavior as cycling or parking on pavements.

    • Les, it was you who called people “snobbish” for having the temerity of wanting gated properties. I called you an “inverted snob” (look it up if you don’t understand it).

  5. This comment area is not meant for the same people going on and on insulting each other do us all a favour and please stop these usless comments, the whole story was about planning in an area near where there are already many new houses, if you do not want this area having even more houses let you message be heard in the right place dont argue on a news web page

    • have you tried getting through to TDC regarding planning objections?
      I have tried several times have even written to enquire why people are being ignored the answer I got was nothing TDC rude ignorant people and any one that does complain it is the same reason time after time no variance in comments as I have said before ask the public for their input then ignore it, democracy at its finest it is a whitewashI will go on at selfish people who want more houses built on some one elses doorstep and not their own Westwood is not the place to keep building regardless of whether it is close to the shops or not.that reason is utter bull.

  6. But underlying the whole argument, the country lacks housing , so long as there is a demand for it, it will be built and lived in. Surely any extra house is helping to relieve the pressure. As a nation we have chosen to accept an open borders policy , those coming here need somewhere to live. Somewhere has to get the housing why not here? Alledgedly its called progress, personally i’m. Not so sure.

    • yes the country lacks housing not just Thanet and why overload one area with nasty looking hutches? Westwood has no park or open spaces the place is overpopulated the air stinks of car fumes and still they keep on building and each new development will have its own shops.Locals deserve to live in the houses built in Thanet not outsiders and by the way is any of this housing at Westwood on your doorstep?

      • Each new development will not have its own shops. The lack of public facilities in new developments has been remarked upon often in local newspapers-not just Kent’s local papers.

      • We live in a country that effectively has open borders , but you want to dictate where those in the country can and can’t live? Housing is being all over the place, when you get the chance get the train into london and look at all the sites being developed along the route, then drive up and see the same.
        We’re a country with a lot of people and growing fast , on top of that the majority want to live in the south east. Thanet has been largely ignored for many years, location and access make it unattractive for industry . But the land is relatively cheap and available. We’ll be getting loads of houses sooner or later, come what may.. You never know it may recover some of its old popularity wealth and glitz. Just don’t hold your breath

        • most places being built on up the line are not small confined areas like Thanet and if your comments are directed at me I do not care where people live so long as it is not on my doorstep the whole housing load should be shared around all three main towns not only in Margate, Ramsgate, Westgate, Birchington and the villages but every where including Broadstairs which for some reason seems exempt from mass building works

      • Oh I don’t think Emmeline or indeed any of us “hate” Manston, why should we? We just don’t want there to be an airport near Manston/Ramsgate/Minster etc.

        • and I do not want thousands of houses built near me but we do not always get what ewe want in this life.its funny how it always seems to be the people of Ramsgate moaning about an airport that is not even an airport sad ,sad people

    • build on Manston let Ramsgate suffer the same dangerous roads, thousands more people and the trouble that goes with it all bring it on and the jet skis let us see then who complains that the price of their home has dropped because of the future slums that are surrounding them

  7. Of course the local population is increasing. Local couples (many of whom belong to families which have lived here for generations, believe it or not) are having children! But the government has admitted that they allocated a number greater than necessary to Thanet. However, it’s not clear yet what they’re going to do about it.

  8. Same old names commenting all the time on here. Are they the only people whose comments are allowed? Give us all a break and argue offline and show only sensible relevant opinions from other people for a change.

  9. to Peter Checksfield I think our “discussion” has come to an end don’t you?we are always going to disagree on where houses should or should not be built all I want right now is for my last remaining days however many that may be is to be able to enjoy the wild life in my garden and the luxury of breathing clean air

  10. Peter and I have called it a day on our discussion obviously Marva wants to carry on and on well I am calling time on you Marva so please do not reply to any of my comments and that is the last time of asking.goodbye and good night.

  11. Kathy will you be covering this meeting? I attended the last council meeting for the development of this site and it was a total shambles no one could hear what was being said and they showed the wrong pictures from which I understands happens regularly. TDC are not fit for purpose and need reporting on at every possible chance.

  12. Kathy Bailes Lesley Peeling asked if you will be covering this council meeting and she’s had no answer yet so I too am asking will IoTNs be reporting on this meeting?as I feel people should be kept in the loop on this contentious application

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