Masterplan for 450-home development at Shottendane Road approved

Development at the farmland off Shottendane Road Photo Sarah Bowers

A masterplan for a controversial 450 home development off Shottendane Road has been approved by Thanet council.

The development proposal by Gladman Developments Ltd was rejected by Thanet council three times – in April, June and then July of 2021. But it was then granted following an inquiry last year.

The proposal was initially sent back to the drawing board by councillors with the developer told the 10% affordable housing offer was inadequate. Thanet council’s Local Plan policy stipulates 30% affordable housing unless proved that this figure is unviable.

In the following June the application was rejected yet again by Thanet council’s planning committee due to an “insulting” affordable housing offer of 15%, flood risk, harm to wildlife and agricultural land and concerns at the inability to provide required health care for new residents.

The following month it was again rejected on the grounds of an unacceptable percentage of affordable housing although councillors had raised numerous concerns including the lack of biodiversity surveys and mitigation, wildlife, the loss of farmland and the issue of greatly increased pressure on access to healthcare services.

Gladman’s appealed to the Secretary of State against the refusal.

Planning Inspector David Cliff BA Hons MSc MRTPI upheld the appeal and granted permission for the development in February 2022. An application by Gladman’s for a full award of costs against Thanet District Council was rejected.

Places for People plans for ‘ecological enhancements’ Image CSA environmental

The development includes the homes, a new distributor link road connecting Hartsdown Road, Shottendane Road and Manston Road, two new roundabouts, public children’s play areas and recreational routes.

The plan offers 68 properties as affordable housing on an 80% affordable rent and 20% shared ownership mix  with approximately £4.9million in contributions to community and highways infrastructure.

The masterplan application for the site has been made by Places for People Developments, a property management, development, regeneration and leisure company.

The site masterplan outlines paths and cycle routes, trees and wildflower meadow planting, play areas, open space, a trim trail, sustainable drainage and ‘ecological enhancements’ that include a bird mitigation area, hedgehog highways, log piles and bird and bat boxes.

It also includes a block plan showing the layout of the properties.

Image CSA environmental

The illustrative plan says: “A large new linear park is proposed within the northern part of the site. This will be planted with native tree species of local provenance to reflect and restore some of the elements of the local landscape character that have been historically lost.

“The character of this linear route will be semi-rural in style in order to respect the settlement edge location of the site as well as integrate the new development with the neighbouring development. A paved route will run through the park to provide an off-road route for pedestrians and cyclists. Seating will also be provided at regular intervals.

Places for People ‘open space’ plan Image CSA environmental

“A trim trail will be included, set at 50 metre intervals alongside the paved route. A range of equipment will provide recreational opportunities for older children and adults.

“Planting within the linear park will be informed by the ecological strategy to provide high quality wildlife habitat together with amenity benefits.”

Referring to the bird mitigation area the plan says: “Creation of a Bird Mitigation Area in the south east corner of the site, which will include an area of grassland, a ‘Beetle Bank’, as well as sections left to colonise with tussock-forming grasses and wildflowers.

“This area will be fenced off from public access to provide suitable habitat and food for a range of bird species including grey partridge, corn bunting and skylark.”

Harvest last year on the Shottendane farmland Photo Ros Tapp

Places for People Developments plan to build out the site in four phases and currently have applications for the phasing, design code, emissions mitigation and ecological design strategy submitted to Thanet council, awaiting decision.

The Gladman’s masterplan was granted approval yesterday (July 11).


  1. May as well close all our beaches and rivers, the problem with raw sewage being pumped into them with the slightest drizzle of rain will never be resolved given all these houses being built.

    • All of the hpuses being built will have had to deal with southern water and pay a fee to access the supply and waste systems, maybe an FOI request to Southern Water asking how much they have received so far and expect to receive in the years to come and what improvements they intend making to their infrastructure to deal with the homes that will be added to it.

      • What’s house building got to do with the aquifer?
        The aquifer from which the south east draws much of its water spreads for hundreds of miles, even under the Dover Straits. It’s made up of the chalk rock that lies under much of south east England and North East Europe.
        One of the biggest sources of pollution is the over use of fertilisers and pesticides in farming.

  2. what the point of local planning by the council when the companies just appeal and win, yet more people coming into the area and soon no farmland to grow the crops to feed everyone,and no wildlife to provide the eco system that we are destroying bit by bit. This building on farmland must be the crazies thing this government is creating, no thought for the future .We will be importing even more food stuff to keep the population growing

    • May, the Labour Party announced on the day after local elections that they will greatly increase house building targets, including building more on Green spaces and agricultural land. The concreting over Britain will only get worse under Labour.

  3. The report mentions the issue of greatly increased pressure on access to healthcare services, but nothing is said about resolving the issue. Will TDC increase and improve the needed community infrastructure around this new development, such as healthcare, schools, policing, etc.?

    • Is TDC responsible for providing these services? Surely it comes down to KCC, the police and the nhs etc to provide their respective services, TDC’s role i’d guess would be one of liason and engagement to ge the provisions in place.

  4. Will the developer pay the home owners flood damages ever time it floods. Because they are building on, over a river. Insurance will not pay that’s for sure so why allow it to be built in the first place. Makes no sense at all. May as well build in the harbour, stupidity at its best

    • In my experience with new housing developments, the developers promise the world to get consent and very often deliver very little of what they promise. Are Thanet Council going to ensure that Gladmans are going to deliver everything that they have promised? Watch this space 😥

      • You are 100% spot on . Promise the world but deliver sod all. Gladman barrette same company so there’s your developer. With all that’s going on at the the moment with interest rates ect . You would be off your head to buy one of these off plan . You might find signing a contract only to find once build your be paying more than its currently worth as house prices drop off.

  5. I have lived here for 60 odd years never really thought of moving. But now with so many houses being built I dont recognise thanet any more.

    It doesnt matter what time of day you travel its gridlocked.

    Soon thanet will be just one huge London borough, it’s really quiet sad as thanet always had space to breath, not anymore.

    We will 100% be leaving within the next 5 years.

    • And go where? Unless you’re thinking of a croft on a remote Scottish island, you’ll find much the same sort of thing happening anywhere in the UK.

    • I’ve lived here since 1989, I wasn’t even 2 years old. I’ve always loved and always defended Thanet, but I can’t any more, it’s unrecognisable. Family from London used to say how lovely it was here, whenever they visited. I’ll definitely be off elsewhere as soon as I have no family keeping me here.

    • This looks like ‘the same as usual’ why the heck dont you just concrete over the whole of Thanet and be done with it?

  6. The speeding on that road ain’t gonna get any better with another 750 to 1000 cars added to local roads . You try to drive that road at a sensible speed someone will be right up your bumper.

  7. What no doctor dental surgeries,no ,primary school , no shops.At least this time no lies about ,providing things .Hedgehog trail etc,trim park ,linear park,(what exactly are these parks) bird migrating area,all new tricks to get planning permission

  8. Perhaps Cathy- or someone with a legal background- can make a note of promises made and hold them to it. If they don’t then that can be used as evidence against future developments

  9. I dread to think in 50 or 100 years time-What Thanet be like? No open fields or country-Just houses and houses all squashed in together and more traffic on Gridlocked roads.

  10. i no end to this there no end to this madness ? some people must be raking it in just for signing forms – nice work if you can get it

  11. I remember speaking to a Tonbridge and Malling planning person once and they said the problem was that developers could go to appeal – which stretched the council financially – and if T&M lost, the control of the whole development was out of their hands. So many lobbyists for builders/developers at parliament – but not many for the farmers and food growers.

  12. Theoretically, councils should have Planning Enforcement Officers who check if planning agreements are being adhered to.
    All this talk of wildlife areas and trees of local provenance are all very well. But developers just stick the saplings in the mud and just leave them. Will there be checks to make sure the trees are watered over the dry summers in the first few years? I suspect not.
    But I bet the developers will scatter tough lawn grass seed all round them and then mow that grass down to the soil at regular intervals to make it look like they are “keeping it tidy!” Regularly-mowed grass with a line of dying “pom-pom trees” is NOT a wildlife area.
    I still retain a vague hope that the new ,Labour-led ,Council will be better than the rest and will actually pay attention to the detail after Planning permission was granted by the Inspector.

    • Keith Starmer has promised that house building will sky rocket under a Labour government and that developers will be able to build over huge swathes of Green belt and agricultural land, how is that making things better ?

      The Tories house building has made a significant dent in our wildlife numbers but a Kier Starmer government will be a catastrophe for our ever dwindling wildlife and our food security situation will be even more precarious, relying ever more on foreign nations that couldn’t care less about us.

  13. It hasn’t taken much more than 5 minutes post-election to rescind the ‘no estates’ promises made pre-election (all parties at the Westgate hustings). One might wish for more moral fibre – reinforced by two excerpts from HANSARD which might promote a reference to the Secretary of State :
    HANSARD 6 October 2020 (the ‘Anti Algorithm, Anti Top Down Debate) per Mike Amesbury (Opposition Spokesman) : ‘the very DNA of these proposals is a shift of control, power and influence from our local communities to developers, it is a developer’s charter’. Whose side is TDC now on you may wonder ?
    HANSARD 6 April 2023 per Martin Vickers (CON) : ‘the Secretary of State said how potent locally led planning policies were, but frequently the Planning Inspectorate drives a coach and horses through decisions made by local planning committees …’ Secretary of State : ‘Our changes to the national planning policy framework are designed to do exactly that, I talked to the new chief executive of the Planning Inspectorate earlier last week to reinforce the point that my hon. Friend has consistently made on behalf of his constituents in Cleethorpes’
    It may be that i) the All Party Climate Emergency Group was satisfied that the water security problem has evaporated – Southern Water can cope in one of the wettest parts of England and ii) the population forecast in a notoriously fecund local population is such that, having exhausted ‘brownfield’ resources (despite Thanet’s long term empties increasing 18% and 2nd homes by 10%, 2022 over 2021, giving 3,000 non-prime occupied properties – 1 in 25 and over twice the national rate + a rethink on how to more sensibly occupy Westwood X broad asphalt acres), TDC have forecast a boom in executive jobs regardless of bank rates heading North for a protracted period of more than a fortnight and a declining need to preserve food security and biodiversity ?
    I’m not sure how a plonked estate such as is proposed assists with any ‘net carbon’ drive – I didn’t see much in the way of social amenity (e g a corner shop, a meeting place or two – perhaps Stagecoach will redirect routes but will all those (jobless ?) executives take any notice ?)
    I don’t recall any consultation on the revised Local Plan that has clearly already been decided within the 5 minutes of the new administration taking office (and I never got an answer in the pre-election ‘manifestos’ – housing was studiously avoided.) Even the Homebuilders Federation when whingeing about ‘locally led’ was more concerned with ‘Up North’ (Oxon/Cantab Arc and beyond) where it saw actual economic growth potential.
    You will find in the Voyage to Lilliput a reference to the worthwhileness of the man who causes two blades of grass to grow where only one grew before – if we are not careful there will be a struggle to grow just the one. TIP: buy Blue Circle now – Labour supports the ‘developer’s charter’ – forget local democracy it’s so yesterday!

  14. Indeed – exactly what population is TDC budgeting for ? The original top down imposition of c 20,000 houses implied a population increase of maybe 50,000 (with maybe another 30,000 cars). There was a 30% ‘affordable’ requirement but no one takes that seriously (either in what is actually ‘affordable’ or whether they’d ever get built anyway. Quite possibly we have a local ‘social rent’ requirement of up to 5,000 units and you’d think that could be largely satisfied by ‘brownfield’ which is alleged to be the priority. But that of course is not in the Developer’s Charter which a Labour administration seems keen to pursue (having satisfied themselves that the revised Local Plan has been back to basics and Sustainability isn’t a problem – or do we have an administration that is not ‘joined up’ kowtowing against the professed policy stated by its spokesman in the Great Algorithm Debate in 2020 and in practice agreed by the national drive for ‘locally led’ Local Plans ? Most peculiar.
    Whatever happened to the right homes in the right places ?

  15. So the SOS has also agreed that 15% affordable housing on a development of this size is adequate when TDC say they need 30%?
    Only people coming down from London can afford to buy these homes but what do they tell their insurance companies about the risk of flooding, knowing these developers have built on a flood valley? It can only get worse when it is covered in concrete and tarmac with no soil to absorb the rain! I wouldn’t want to take that risk.

  16. One must presume that the Planning Committee liaised with the All Party Climate Advisory Group who liaised with SWater and it all fits in handsomely with the unpublished unconsulted revised Local Plan because ‘water security’ is not a problem and neither will there be any reconsideration of the hitherto algorithmic imposition of 20,000 executive houses (50,000 bodies + 30,000 cars ?) which corresponds with the fertility of the local population as anticipated by TDC strategic planners + the commensurate number of executive jobs. Just how many executive toffee apple sellers can Dreamland accommodate ???
    Or just maybe TDC is reinforcing its former reputation for dysfunctionality apace ???

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