Campaigners’ delight as 74 home development on Reading Street agricultural land refused

Refusal for farmland housing plan Photo Fran Daley.

Campaigners in Beacon Road and Kingsgate Wards are celebrating after an application to build 74 homes on land off Reading Street Road was refused.

The proposal was to build on 5.06 hectares of agricultural land between Broadstairs and St Peter’s that was also within a designated ‘green wedge.’

In the planning application it says: “An application for residential development on this site would, under normal circumstances, be contrary to the adopted Development Plan, however in this instance, Thanet District Council have failed the Housing Delivery Test.

“The Housing Delivery Test (HDT) was introduced by the Government as a monitoring tool in order to speed up the delivery of housing.

“The Housing Delivery Test compares the net homes delivered over three years to the homes required over the same period. The 2020 results show Thanet District Council to have delivered just 54% of the housing requirements in the district. The November 2019 results for Thanet show that delivery was just 35%.

“Therefore, the council had to apply a 20% buffer to housing land supply and to produce an action plan. The failure to pass the HDT at such a low level means that the presumption in favour of sustainable development applies to all housing development within the district.”

However, Thanet council has refused the plans, some 9 months after they were first submitted.

The proposal provoked some 140 objections with campaigners saying the development would put pressure on local infrastructure and especially on highways.

Resident Wendy Hall said: “It is great news that the essential green wedge land at Reading Street Road is going to be preserved for the benefit of all local residents.

“It’s great that the views of the community were louder and heard above the might of the developers, a real milestone in the history of the area.”

Campaign spokesperson Jenny Matterface said: ‘It’s been a very long and worrying wait for residents. The campaign started when we couldn’t hold public meetings so the whole campaign was run on social media and by leaflet-drop.

“We thank everyone who helped deliver the 1200 leaflets. This site is in the Green Wedge in both the Local and Neighbourhood Plans and was a protected vista in the latter. Green Wedge designation is designed to create clear space between settlements and this one, if approved, would have closed a large part of the gap between Broadstairs and Margate.

“We are delighted with the refusal.”


  1. It definitely is good news and hopefully the decision will stand but don’t relax too soon, look what has happened at Shottendane 😭

    • There probably is no “fervour ” among councillors to build on farmland. There is however a set number of new houses and flats which the government wants built in Thanet- and of course everywhere else in the UK.

    • Check out the refusal document online under OL/TH/21/0941 on the TDC planning website. It states quite clearly this is prime agricultural land and the applicant hasn’t made a valid argument no other site is available. The officer’s report emphasises the Green Wedge designation and umpteen policies in the Local and Neighbourhood Plans.

      What is interesting the application isn’t in the land owner’s name nor is it mentioned anywhere.

      Land Allocation Ltd who did apply are based in York and we think are a firm that looks for likely sites, possibly on a ‘no win,no fee’ basis.

  2. What odds that the developer appeals against the decision & it gets approved by a planning inspector? We have seen it happen time after time all over the county.

    • Exactly Mike, and John! Its this Tory government that has imposed on councils nationally to build millions of new homes, so expect to see this overturned on appeal! Whats the name of the North Thanet MP again?

  3. No doubt Grade I farmland is at even more of a premium given local difficulties in the ex-Soviet Empire ? Observations have been made to the Local Plan Review that matters had better be frozen regarding large estate development and deferred to at least such time as the latest ONS population report has been absorbed (population actually declining so ‘social cleansing’ off the cards and we won’t have a rea;listic water strategy plan until next year – as was said years ago when the ‘target’ was 12,000 : ‘it’ll all come down to sewage in the end’. Recommend y’all read NODDY GOES TO TOYLAND on housebuilding and infrastructure ! And whittling the affordability ration away won’t help those in need of social rent locally – nor AirBnBs.

  4. There’s no Local Plan? Where have you been? Perhaps you’re thinking of the call-out for the next phase of the Local Plan to 2040.

  5. Nor is the shottendane one in the land owners name Jenny Matterface, it is in the name of land agents Gladman developments but in January this year they sold it to Barratt homes. This planning application should never have been given permission knowing what I know to be criminal

    • If you have evidence of criminal activity I assume you have informed Kent Police and handed over all your evidence?

    • The officer refused it and I suggest you read the report as it is very detailed. Nothing to do with nimbies but the simple fact thatin the Local and Neighbourhood Plans it is Green Wedge designed to keep separate Broadstairs and Margate by clearly defined spaces.

      The difference between this one and Shottendane is that the latter is in the Local Plan for housing.

Comments are closed.