Local Plan ‘Omission’ sites – Challock Parish Council Response
The confines pilot scheme, proposed by Ashford Borough Council, allowed local people to play a key role in shaping the outcome.
The confines pilot feeds into Ashford Borough Council’s Local Plan for the borough.
The Local Plan sets out the land that needs to be provided in the borough to accommodate new homes and jobs up to 2030. This is a 15 year period.
It also includes the policies that will be used to help decide planning applications.
The village confines are used to identify the area within which small scale development and infill may be acceptable in principle within Challock, although planning permission will obviously depend on detailed designs being appropriate.
Local people extensively explored the village confines and shared ideas on how they should be defined on a plan.
The conclusion of this process was a locally generated interpretation of the village confines. The Borough Council can use the new boundary line as a material consideration in reaching planning decisions on new housing development and the Parish Council should obviously support this approach.
The confines pilot has fully delivered what it set out to do.
The confines pilot came up with a clear vision for the slow long term growth of the village to maintain its unique character while allowing small scale growth that will help maintain its vital amenities.
The agreed village confines is fair and caters for small scale development without any major impact on the village both aesthetically and environmentally but still allows the village to expand organically over the foreseeable future.
Development has come forward on smaller infill sites as opposed to one or two larger sites.
There is no identified need for large-scale housing development sites in the village, as the smaller sites within the village confines will easily deliver more appropriate scaled development.
The main purpose of the confines report was to clearly identify where development would be acceptable and avoid any uncertainty and ambiguity.
It gives the Parish Council absolutely clear guidance of where development may be appropriate until 2030.
Challock has more than contributed to the Local Plan objectives; 18% increase in housing and any development proposals coming forward that are outside of the village confines should be refused on this basis. The confines map gives the Parish Council and the Borough Council clear direction. There was considerable backing for the confines from ABC and they should also stand firmly behind the report as what would be the incentive for other Parishes to go through the process if it is not material consideration in reaching planning decisions.
The confines report was a comprehensive study that took over two years to complete and it would be going completely against the community’s wishes to consider sites outside of its boundary.