Amended plans lodged with council for 1600 home development on Birchington farmland

1600 home plan for Birchington (Ptarmigan Land)

Amended plans to build 1,600 homes, a primary school, shops, care home, expansion of Birchington medical centre and a community park on farmland at Birchington have been lodged with Thanet council.

The development is earmarked to take place on land off the Canterbury Road and was first proposed by Ptarmigan Land and Millwood Designer Homes in 2019 with a planning application submitted in December 2020.

Millwood Designer Homes is no longer part of the scheme. The joint applicants are now Ptarmigan Birchington Ltd, Places for People Homes Ltd, landowners The Master Fellows and Scholars of the College of Saint John The Evangelist in the University of Cambridge and The Birchington Pool Trust.

Amendments include a reduction in homes from 1,650 to 1,600 and introduce additional green areas to preserve archaeological potential. There are also changes to the development boundary line.

(Ptarmigan Land)

The plan includes a new strategic link road between Minnis Road and Manston Road, alterations to existing junctions and new access arrangements from Minnis Road, Park Lane, Canterbury Road and Manston Road/Acol Hill and a new recreational and leisure shared-use link between Minnis Road and Park Lane.

Development will not take place on areas of regionally important archaeological remains across the site that are to be preserved in situ.

These include:

  1. double concentric ring ditch (possible late neolithic/early bronze age henge) along the northern boundary of the site at Mill Row
  2. rectilinear and rectangular enclosures along the southwestern perimeter of the site 3. group of three ring ditches to the south of the site to the east of Canterbury Road
  3. medieval settlement remains associated with an existing path/track toward the centre of the west of the site.

The proposals include a network of new cycle and pedestrian routes linking Quex, the coast and the wider countryside; 36 play spaces with 6 equipped; seasonal wetland basins; Sustainable Drainage Systems (SuDS) and discharge via infiltration plus swales and bioretention systems; woodland with information boards; edible corridor and community orchard and a heritage pocket park.

Network Rail has issued an objection to the application on the basis of an increase of users at Brook’s End Level Crossing. Network Rail has confirmed, however, that this objection could be overcome subject to a suitable planning condition and a contribution towards the a new crossing across the railway.

The Birchington development site

Following the original outline application a letter objecting to the plans was sent to Thanet council by councillors George Kup (above) and Phil Fellows (below).

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

A petition was also raised by resident Gary Fowler questioning 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.

The original plans also prompted a furious letter to government from North Thanet MP Sir Roger Gale, a forceful objection lodged by Birchington Parish Council and some 200 public objections.

The amended plans can be seen on the Thanet council planning portal, reference OL/TH/20/1755

St John’s College Cambridge Thanet land ownership

Cleve Court Farm, Thanet, Kent, CT7 0JH.310.64
Shuart Farm, St Nicholas At Wade, Kent, CT7 0NB.192
Docker Hill Farm, Monkton, Ramsgate, Kent, CT12 4JH.137.8
Crumps Farm, St Nicholas At Wade, Kent, CT7 0NQ.92.17
Land at Nash Court Farm, Nash Road, Margate, Kent, CT9 4LA.59.08
Gore End Farm, Minnis Road, Birchington, Kent, CT7 9SJ.32.98
Land adjacent to Shuart Farm, St. Nicholas At Wade, Kent. CT7 0NB.15.7
Nash Court Farm, Nash Road, Margate, Kent, CT9 4LA.4.86
Garden area rear of Acol Cottages, Kent, CT7 0HU.0.14

Major land development on those sites includes Nash Court Farm allocated up to 1,461 residential units and the Ptarmigan site  Birchington with 1600 homes.

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  1. As Thanet has a micro climate ; ideal for growing crops ; it is prize agricultural land. The infrastructure is abysmal , poor road network; lack of doctors; dentists; just 1 hospital. Building vast amounts of housing is downright madness. With interest rates rising many homes will be unaffordable anyway which means they will remain empty . Thanet is doomed sadly 😢😢😢

    • BUT

      1. Folks keep breeding and demanding more houses

      2. Folks keep inviting persons from other countries to come and
      live here

      • Breeding as your answer. Land grabbers of farn land purely for profit not breeding.. No law stopping famulies to have kids. Building on green land that tdc agreed… Think.. Council tax. stinks of allowing land to be trashed

    • They won’t remain empty, if anything people will be out-bidding each other to get one. I agree with the rest of your comment though.

  2. i dont know why they bother with planning , obviously long term thanet will be covered in houses , farming will be another another industry wiped out , at the cost of importing food from overseas

  3. Disgusting proposal from people in the west of the county who have already blotted that. Not to mention the scummy Oxbridge land banker’s. Look at what Canterbury has done to it’s environs.
    All Council Officers should be contractually barred from networking with the likes of Leaders Romans and other house building lobbyists too. They get far too convivial on LinkedIn, etc. We, the current Council Tax payers, pay their salaries and they should be reminded of this.

  4. It was clearly understood that all parties had subscribed to ‘pausing’ large estate developments – TDC having finally joined the ranks of some 60 or so local authorities who had either so paused or ditched outright redundant Local Plans. Redundant because the new mantra is ‘locally led’ accompanied by new phenomena called SUSTAINABILITY and RESILIENCE. Let us hope for some joined up thinking in Cecil Square so that the Planning Committee members understand what ‘pause’ means and we all await clarification of the NPPF which the S of S is working on with his new Chief Planner.
    As it is, Big Developer is apparently ‘on strike’ with newbuilds savagely down (by two-thirds ?) allegedly in protest at uncertainties though much more likely is it that inflation in the construction industry (20 -30% for materials ?) and mortgage interest rates have ki-boshed activity for the next several years.
    Fortunately in Thanet we have ample present development opportunity with our twice national average longterm empties, a vigorous AirBnB policy (?), and ample scope for redeveloping acres of asphalt at Westwood Cross as the Big Boxes succumb to this strange animal called online retail ! Greenfield last – especially prime ag.

  5. The Tory councillors voted in favour of this at local council, look up reverse psychology and see how you are being PLAYED ….Birchington

  6. Its getting out of hand. Give it another 5 years and thanet will be just one big run down town.

    Water companies cant cope now, the infrastructure cant cope now,

    Thanet use to be a nice open place to live but is clearly getting over run with new houses.

      • If you study Evolution by Natural Selection, you will understand that it favours those who need the least.
        As for “dinosaurs”… Comets/meteorites take out housing aswell as apex predators.

  7. All the above comments are correct, and I agree with all of them.
    No sense in building anything, until Interest Rates are down again.

    • Londoners are selling up, houses down here are cheap enough for them to then come and buy. These aren’t for locals.

  8. It’s not great that Thanet don’t own most of the land in which we live. Cambridge is off setting it’s own house numbers by building here and we have n say.
    Just becoming a bigger dumping ground for other areas and it’s so wrong

  9. Once again ,the planning permission ,states ,primary school ,medical centres ,when has any developer,who puts these,in the application,actually ,builds them ,none that’s what the answer is ,and local councils ,fall for it every time,and especially TDC,these developers are blatant liars, they should be made to build them ,or face multi-million pound fines ,I am not saying ,2or 3, but of £25m+

  10. Plus fund investments are from an Octopus fund so they dont have their own money its funded by investirs.. Like Manston. Get rid of PLANNING PLEASE AND LETS FIGHT FIR LAND NOT TO BE BUILT ON.. THATS MASDIVE EVEN AT 1600

  11. Remember when you said ‘rather have an airport than housing’ and we said ‘you’re going to get the housing as well’? This is kinda what we meant.

    • Yet there are *still* people who think that having an airport will mean no houses.
      And these people get to vote!

      • And there are *still* people who think that not having an airport would result in no houses being built elsewhere in Thanet.

        • Reply to Andrew – But do you think that anybody who is sensible enough not to want a cargo hub airport near Ramsgate is stupid enough to think that not having an airport = no new houses elsewhere in Thanet? Because I certainly don’t.

  12. Even the Councillors who wanted this development are complaining now !
    Well it’s a bit late for all that. When has any developer actually built what they have said they would? There are always alterations after consent is passed, they should have expected it. Development on this Grade 1 agricultural land anywhere in Thanet should have been refused. We need crops growing there to feed the country’s fast increasing population, not houses.

  13. It’s all very well planning for an expanded medical centre but the problem is getting the GPs. Thanet is already short of 20+ GPs in the various practices.

    There should now be legislation that housing cannot be permitted on agricultural land. Come on Roger & Craig – listen to what we want and do something for this area.

    • And where in the legislation will it say that people, desperately needing homes, will be housed?
      A shortage of doctors (nurses, dentists, hospitals, schools, electricity, gas and water supply ….) is not limited to Thanet.

      • So Phyllis you think homes should be built on agricultural land. And how do we then feed our population? Continue to import and risk shortages?

        There are plenty of other options for building homes in other places – repurpose run-down town centres; empty properties above shops and amusement arcades; brownfield sites etc.

        • ” Continue to import and risk shortages?”

          We’re gunna get shortages and near double prices on foods when full brexit checks come in at Dover finally anyways. (unless the Tories delay it again, because they know how much it will f**k the uk further…)

    • You might as well be asking a Thanet grown cabbage to do something, you would certainly get a better response than from the useless oxygen-thief Roger Gale. 40 years in Parliament…. he is to blame (alongside many, many others) for the ruination of the country.

      There is no company in the world that would employ this kind of retard for 40 years and watch their business slowly bankrupt itself.

      Thanet needs an MP with foresight, vision and inteligence for a back-banch warmer like Gale.

  14. I agree with most of these comments. It’s a disaster if this is allowed to go ahead. Development should be forced to utilise brown field sites, so what if it costs more. As for empty promises from the developers, we have already seen how they play out…

    • If TDC oppose an application without just cause, the developer will take it to appeal, where TDC would (expensively) lose.

  15. Great if 50% were for much needed social housing but I am sure they won’t be.
    The selling agents will advertise them in London to get the best prices they can and fill them all with the much loved DFL.
    They have government backing for new homes so TDC would lose if they opposed it and I’m pretty sure they know that too.

  16. This is worth repeating, Folkestone & Hythe District Council has approved Planning Permission to build 8,000 dwellings just out of town on a disused race course, so are these objections just a Thanet thing? NIMBY’s or what!

      • Well Peter, that was a dog racing course if memory serves, also now thankfully obsolete, mainly because losing dogs got shot dead!

        • It was not only a dog race track. It was a well used and well loved recreational and social venue. Aswell as the site of the biggest weekly market in East Kent. Granting planning permission for residential properties on it was the biggest mistake TDC ever made.

  17. When Thanet Green Party put a motion to Council about water supply and treatment relating to new builds the Tory led Council voted to refuse to discuss. At the same meeting Labour had a motion about housing need which suffered the same fate.
    Thanet Greens aim to try again with a similar motion to Council, let’s see what the Labour led Council will decide? I hope it’s to pause new builds over 10 homes in size until conditions are met. Let’s hope TDC look at the thousands of unused and empty homes, the actual housing and infrastructure needs for Thanet rather than the central government fantasy figures.

  18. “Let’s hope TDC look at the thousands of unused and empty homes”

    There are NOT thousands of of unused and empty homes in the area. Unless, you can prove me wrong?

    • Anon – TDC has a report on empty homes. A quick look just now shows figures but I haven’t ‘figured’ these out from my quick look.
      Empty homes in 2019 – 838 but 1249 in 2020.
      Another table shows 1895 empty in 2020 with 1273 empty for 6 months or more.
      There also homes removed from the data base for reasons I’m not sure of but there seems to be hundreds of these.
      One could add empty business premises that could be converted to homes, loads of these across Thanet.

      That’s my evidence which I grant you is not sufficiently detailed but does give a sense that there “1000’s of empty homes and other properties”.
      Over to you.

  19. Today I read that Thanet has the most over-development in Kent after Dartford. Over 22% of Thanet has been built on.

    Congratulations once again to the inept and useless TDC (Thanet District Circus – run by clowns). Thanet has no need whatsoever of housing for Thanet residents, it is purely for the greed of developers (and those with brown envelopes) and the subsidised influx of DFL’s (dross from London).

    I believe school children could make a better job of running Thanet and I cannot believe that local councillors can possibly be this incompetent so one can only assume there is something else behind the destruction of the island. I suspect money talks.

    I also wonder where the extra £ millions and £ millions TDC are receiving in Council tax for the thousands of homes already built has gone.

    The streets are filthy, rubbish everywhere, traffic at a standstill every single day, council functions being run by clock-watching jobsworths, parking on verges, pavements, welcome to third-world Thanet, the toilet of Kent.

  20. I am one of the “dross from London”. I think Alex Peters lives in a different Ramsgate from the one I live in. His/her last paragraph describes a very different town from the one I live in.

  21. As usual the DFL wades in trying to prop up their lousy investment in an over-priced property for a dump like THANET (not just Ramsgate dear). Like the DFL who thinks Margate is a top ten holiday destination IN THE WORLD. This weeks news tell us that Margate in the sixth WORST resort in the entire country.
    Frankly, it is DFL’s that are doing as much damage as the council. How to spot a DFL…. rubbish bins in the front garden, three cars per household, snotty liberal attitude.

    • Rubbish bins in the front garden, yes. But only on days when they’re due to be emptied!
      One motor, but three push-bikes.
      Attitude – caring, progressive, tolerant, inclusive and nothing snotty about it, ‘cept when I have a cold!
      DFL – yes. I chose Ramsgate, I wasn’t here by the accident of birth. I brought my London dosh and, gladly, spend it here.
      I see more DFEE’s than DFL’s – that’s Down From Everywhere Else; Manchester, MK, Oxford, Yorkshire, Brum, Galway, Wales, Bangledesh, Germany, Spain, Malta, France, Oz, NZ and that’s just for starters. Not forgetting the actual, honest-to-goodness, Thanet lad who can take his lineage back to William (ooops that means he’s a DFEE – Normandy).
      ANd if you want to see the logic of your silliness, we are all DFEE’s because ten thousand years ago Thanet was ice bound and uninhabited by people like us.
      For all the reasons that Thanet is in crisis, very little is to do with DFEE’s. Look to central government, KCC and TDC.

      • Nothing at all wrong with DFLs as my father was a DFL who fought v the Germans in World war 2 and married my mother ; who was a local ; and I guess I would not be here otherwise. DFL s are great but it is not their fault local properties are expensive. It is crazy schemes , Help to buy ; stamp duty holiday ; QE ( basically devaluation ) virtually zero base rate ,; Shared Ownership; 30 or 40 year mortgages; interest only mortgages that have propped up the housing market and inflated prices to eye watering highs. True market forces ; supply; demand; affordability , without any interference should never be tinkered with. Like any major purchase it has always been BUYER BEWARE as high property prices benefit very few .

          • “DFW” means “Down from Wales”, of course. The author of the 9.15 pm comment is none other than Peter Checksfield , local celebrity author and anti-Welsh racist. I am sick of his unpleasant quips about Wales and the Welsh. Perhaps nhe could try having a go at people of other nationalities and see how well that goes down.

    • Of course it’s not just Ramsgate where properties are dear. House prices have gone up pretty much everywhere in the south of England during the last several years.

      I don’t have a car, by the way.

      I suspect Alex Peters is just a troll.

    • I don’t have a front garden and I can’t see anything wrong with having bins out the front near the pavement and the road.

    • If the 9.15 was Checksfield I’m sure he meant DFW to be Deliciously and Frankly Wonderful.

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