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News in brief: Plans revealed to convert Aylesham quarry; Council approves two neighbourhood plans

Words: Laura Edgar
Neighbourhood planning / Shutterstock

A round-up of planning news: 24 April, 2018

Plans revealed to convert Aylesham quarry

Plans that would see the former Snowdown Colliery site into an environmentally friendly science park and rural visitor attraction have been published.

The colliery is two miles from Aylesham, Kent.

Beekeeping equipment supplier Bee Equipment, based at Bridge near Canterbury, is leading the scheme.

The proposals aim to bring a new hub for creative and artisan businesses, as well as an international research centre studying the health and welfare of the honey bee.

Bee Equipment has worked with Dover District Council, the Plumptre Trust and the Coal Authority for past three years to get plans drawn up to transform the 100 acre site, which has lain dormant since October 1987.

The scheme is subject to planning permission.


Council approves two neighbourhood plans

Councillors at Lichfield District Council have approved Lichfield City’s ad Whittington & Fisherwick’s neighbourhood plans.

The plans were examined by independent planning inspectors last year. Both were subject to local referendums in February 2018. The saw Lichfield City saw 57 per cent vote in favour of the plan, while 90 per cent voted in favour of Whittington & Fisherwick’s plan.

Now the two plans have been approved by Lichfield District Council, they carry legal weight and will be incorporated into Lichfield District Council’s Local Plan.

The plans can be viewed on the Lichfield District Council website.


Countryside to deliver 132 Hackney homes

Countryside Properties and Hackney Council have signed an agreement that will see the housebuilder deliver 132 homes at the former Tower Court estate in Stamford Hill.

The development, which has a gross development value of £82 million, will comprise 80 homes for outright sale, 33 for social rent and 19 homes for shared ownership.

It will also offer a total of 3,115 square metres of communal and accessible open space, and a new 361 square-metre depot for the Hatzola ambulance service – the local Jewish-led fast response volunteer service.

The previous residents at Tower Court will have a right to return to the new homes. The remaining social rent homes will be allocated to those on the council’s housing waiting list.


12,000 join the campaign to The Roundhouse

More than 12,000 people have joined a campaign set up to save The Roundhouse, a listed building, in Covent Garden, which is currently the subject of a planning application.

Should developers Captital & Counties (Capco) be granted planning permission from Westminster City Council to excavate the floor of the Roundhouse today (24 April), one of Covent Garden’s oldest live music venues will be evicted.

The campaign has received cross-party support from Conservative MP Mark Field and Adam Hug, leader of the Labour Group on Westminster City Council.

Brian Stein, founder and owner of The Roadhouse, said: “We are looking to Westminster Council to do the right thing and tell Capco that they cannot abuse the planning system to close down The Roadhouse.

“The Roadhouse is one of the independent live music venues that makes Covent Garden the lively and colourful place it is today. It will be a tragedy if we are forced out by a huge property development company that wants to turn our premises in to another exclusive, upmarket restaurant.

“We want Westminster Council to stand up to the property developers and to support the people who live, work and socialise in central London.”


Woolwich Reach scheme approved

The London Borough of Newham has granter permission for bptw partnership’s Woolwich Reach scheme for Nottinghill Genesis.

The 14-storey building will be built on a site that has been derelict for 20 years

It will comprise 28 London Living Rent homes, as well as 47 units for private sale. The development sits next to Pier Road, which links the site to the Woolwich Ferry, while its southern boundary overlooks the Thames. A commercial unit and three townhouses will be built on the ground level.


Two solar photovoltaics schemes approved

The Coal Authority has been granted planning permission for two solar photovoltaics (PV) schemes, one in Durham and the other in Northumberland.

The Durham scheme totals 740kW, while the Northumberland scheme will be 250kW.

Carter Jonas’ infrastructure and energy scheme helped to secure the permissions, and will assist in commissioning them.

The Coal Authority, a non-departmental public body sponsored by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy aims protect the public and the environment in coal mining areas and manages the majority of Britain’s coal mining legacy.


Bedfordshire local plan to go before full council

Central Bedfordshire Council’s local plan will go before the full council on Thursday 26 April, seeking authorisation to submit it to the Secretary of State.

The plan includes proposals for new villages at Marston Vale (up to 5,000 homes) and east of Biggleswade (around 1,500 homes), as well as town extensions north of Luton (around 4,000 homes) and east of Arlesey (around 2,000 homes).

The council said it is aiming to submit their plan to the Secretary of State on 30 April, before “changes to national planning policy that could mean government intervention and potentially more new homes than the 20,000 the council have planned for the area”.  

Nigel Young, executive member for regeneration at the council, said: “Central Bedfordshire needs growth. This local plan is the strategy that will underpin how we achieve the infrastructure, homes and jobs that our residents require. And, crucially, an up-to-date local plan will mean we can avoid government intervention that could mean many more homes imposed on us than we are planning for, and also protect us against speculative development.”

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