Promoted by J Newman on behalf of the Benenden Neighbourhood Development Plan Supporters Group, both of Reeds, The Street, Benenden. CRANBROOK TN17 4DB
Quite simply a vote "Yes" will give the parish the ability to:
- Control house building across the whole parish.
- Provide affordable housing, including Almshouses.
- Use existing brownfield sites where possible.
- Protect our green spaces, beautiful views and dark skies.
- Improve protection for local wildlife sites.
Please don't listen to rumour. You have the power to shape the development of the parish for the forseeable future by voting. Check the facts before you vote.
See the full Plan including site maps, policies, protections and frequently asked questions and answers at www.benendenneighbourhoodplan.org/
Voting NO means we rely on TWBC to make decisions for us
Voting YES on February 3rd gives Benenden control
Your questions answered
Why have a Neighbourhood Development Plan?
An NDP helps us control what new housing is built, and where. It sets out planning conditions and policies on building design, protection for wildlife and green spaces. The referendum means local people get the final say.
Does a NO vote mean no building in the parish?
No. The Government's annual target is 300,000 new homes. They will keep pushing TWBC to build more. Benenden landowners offered up 20 sites, and over 200 hectares. So much land that the parish faced significant development. The NDP team worked hard to reduce this to around 100 homes over 15 years.
A YES vote on 3 February means our NDP will be used for planning decisions. TWBC must respect our choices, sites, and 36 policies. We will have certainty about building in the parish.
Where are the proposed sites?
Three are brownfield:
- One in the village: Uphill, on New Pond Road — 18 to 20 homes (including 7–9 affordable homes)
- Two at Benenden Hospital, both outside the AONB: South site — up to 25 homes (including 7 affordable homes) & North site — 22 to 25 homes (including 6–7 affordable homes)
- Walkhurst Road, Benenden Alms House Trust site — 25 new homes (including 12 affordable rental almhouses)
What about the design of new housing developments?
Policies in the Design and the Built Environment chapter of the Plan outline how houses must reflect existing local design, meet environmental standards, protect Local Wildlife Sites and provide space for parking and play.
What about Dark Skies, Green Spaces, Local Wildlife Sites and Views?
The Plan includes a policy to respect our dark skies. It strengthens protection of Local Wildlife Sites near new developments. 23 views and 11 green spaces are listed and must be respected and protected.
Why do some oppose the Plan?
Some, understandably, are unhappy about building near them. Some, understandably, may want planning permission for their larger fields and orchards. But this plan restricts development to one greenfield site and converts existing brownfield sites into homes for our community.