Proposal for 95 homes on Grade 1 agricultural land in Minster is rejected

The proposed site (Image Turner Jackson Day Associates)

A bid to build 95 homes on Grade 1 agricultural land in Minster has been rejected by Thanet council

Sandwich based Sunningdale House Developments wanted to build the homes on land off Monkton Road alongside another Sunningdale development of 36 homes.

The Minster development was for 2 one bed, 29 two bed, 45 three bed, 16 four bed and 3 five bed homes in a mix of houses and 12  flats. The 95 home proposal included 28 affordable units.

But the plans provoked more than 180 representations to the council and were condemned by both Minster and Monkton parish councils.

A long list of concerns included a lack of Southern Water capacity to connect the homes without further network installation, likely to take two years; overdevelopment, loss of agricultural land; land not earmarked for development in the Thanet Local Plan; lack of parking and highway facilities and the ‘estate’ style of the design.

(Image Turner Jackson Day Associates)

Monkton Parish Council said: “Monkton Parish Council, along with other local Parish Councils, is deeply concerned by the amount of development that is taking place, and is being proposed, in both our villages and across Thanet in general.

“As a PC representing a rural community, we are horrified having to witness the ever-increasing amount of development on greenfield sites. And this is despite having a planning system ostensibly offering protection against such development.

“The legacy we are currently creating is deplorable. So many examples of local development are little short of reckless, resulting in permanent loss of open countryside and arable land, compromising future food security and biodiversity, while at the same time imposing unsustainable pressure on services and infrastructure.”

Monkton Residents’ Association added: “We feel strongly that development in both Minster and Monkton has already far exceeded that which both villages can support and we would therefore request that this application be refused without further consideration.”

CPRE Kent also lodged an extensive objection to the plans and the loss of best value agricultural land.

The proposal was for arable land off Monkton Road (Image Turner Jackson Day Associates)

Minster Action Group had alerted residents to application, saying it was ‘another challenge’ for the village.

The group was set up last year in response to a 115 home development proposed for arable land off Foxborough Lane proposed by Gladman. That application was refused by Thanet council.

In a planning officer report the short-term economic benefits are acknowledged but the officer adds: “The expansion of the village onto undeveloped agricultural land would inevitably involve a change to the character of the countryside in environmental terms and result in the loss of over 4 hectares of best and most versatile agricultural land.

“The development would result in significant harm to the Landscape character area which the site forms part of. There would be detrimental impact on the wider environment from the loss of countryside, change in its character through an artificial landscape character and loss of best and most versatile agricultural land. This harm is given significant weight.

(Image Turner Jackson Day Associates)

“It is considered that insufficient information has been submitted in relation to highway matters, archaeology, refuse and recycling collection and ecology to enable a full assessment to be carried out to ensure that the proposal would not have adverse impacts. In addition, there is insufficient information for a full assessment to be made to determine if there would be unacceptable impacts on functionally linked land for non-breeding SPA/RAMSAR site birds from the loss of the site or impact on surrounding land. In the absence of this information, the development may result in significant harm to the environment, including European designated sites.

“The application would also result in an adverse impact on the residential amenities of existing residents and provide a poor standard of accommodation for future residents and fail to provide an appropriate mix of affordable units.

“Consequently, in this case the adverse impacts of the proposal would significantly and demonstrably outweigh the benefits, therefore planning permission is refused.”



  1. Some people are listening to the ones who put them there but ones thing is correct the grounds for rejection of the Application are really good on all counts.

    • Electric tricycle it’s getting to be like it all over Thanet where in parts its as bad as Minister some maybe worse and yes I know how bad Minister is it was bad the last time I drove through there and unless they have done some very imaginative alternations to the village /town it can not have improved.

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