Tuesday, 27 October 2009

TDC's WARPED VISION FOR THANET

What an extraordinary vision for Thanet, Ezekiel and his cronies seem to have for Thanet's future. If you haven't done so yet, you need to read TDC's vision for The Future that is up for 'consultation' as Thanet's Local Development Framework and can be accessed on TDC's website.
It seems to favour big-business, developers, covering the Isle in concrete and regarding current local inhabitants as deprived, dependent plebs. The picture above gives you some idea of the problem. I find it amazing that the document includes phrases like; "high level protection for the environment" - "sustainable development" and " development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own neeeds". So when the aquifer is gone and Thanet's versatile agricultural land is built on, what about food and drink as basic needs?

The first 50 odd pages seems a justification to redesignate Eurokent (owned by EKO i.e TDC/KCC/us and Rose Farm Estates) as residential land and not employment land as shown in The Thanet Plan 2006. I warned readers early last year that this was likely to happen and in September 2008 this was confirmed by the 'vision' in the pic below and now in the LDF. Instead of employment land, they want Eurokent to be 600 odd houses etc for....... you make your own mind up!
What is one to make of quote after quote of which these are just a few illustrations:
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"a good supply of QUALITY family homes in pleasant residential neighbourhoods (i.e Eurokent)
is an important factor not only to meet existing aspirations but also to attract investors in high value job creating development."
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"discourage in-migration by economically dependent households and meet aspirations of households in high value employment."
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" It is particularly important... to plan for an increase in the type of homes that will meet the aspirations of employers and economically active households aspiring to higher value jobs and to dampen further homes of a type attracting in-migration by dependent and vulnerable people".
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Now forgive me but how many Thanet residents that TDC Councillors represent can afford £250,000 + houses in what will be the 'posh' suburb of Westwood Cross? ( now designated as THE PRIMARY TOWN CENTRE FOR THANET!) Excuse me while I reach into an old Tesco Bag and dig out the bits about about 500 Chinese staff at China Gateway needing housing for their families.
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But you might say, that Ezekiel is on public record as saying that'no further farmland will be designated for employment purposes for China Gateway Phases 2 and 3.' So he is, but what do you make of this from the LDF? You must appreciate that whatever lame excuses used to depart from The Thanet Plan 2006 to re-designate Eurokent as 'housing', the following from the LDF on Page 43 should make you realise that China Gateway or similar can get the go ahead:
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D9: Set out specific based criteria to be WEIGHED AGAINST OTHER POLICIES (all those nice ones about preserving Thanet's highly productive farmland etc) when determining applications for job creating development WHOSE REQUIREMENTS may not be met by existing allocated or safeguarded sites".
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Let me put this in plain English. Most of Manston Business Park has already been developed or has China Gateway Phase 1 approved by Planning last year and if Eurokent is taken out what is left for employment? CGP or CGI has already been in negotiation with EKO about the rest of Manston Business Park. So what this means is quite simple, give TDC a big employment development plan and it will now have the LDF to justify granting planning consent for the building of wharehouses or whatever, on any site left in Thanet on open farmland.
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Who says China Gateway Phases 2 and 3 will not happen?
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This is the same Council that made sure Dreamland's owners doubled the value of its property by a quirky decision that led to its dereliction for 5 years . What other developers will see their land increase in value with this open ended policy that has no restriction to it.
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So the cheap imitation of a poor US shopping Mall, Westwood Cross, is, at the scribble of a TDC pen to become the 'premier' town centre in Thanet whilst Ramsgate, Margate and Broadstairs just have to get on with it. Does anyone in their right mind, other than TDC, think Westwood Cross can be described as a 'town centre'? As for the poor common man in Thanet, you don't come into the equation if you cannot aspire to a £ 250,000 house in a nice suburb that used to be called Eurokent Business Park. Even if you go down to sit on the beach and wonder how your minimum wage salary will get you through the month, you will find that your peaceful view to the horizon, that is meant to be a real plus point for visitors, has been blighted by the positioning of Thanet Wind Farm and The London Array.
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If you have persevered, dear reader, with this post, could I leave you with the TDC view in its LDF document about that industrial estate outside Birchington, called Thanet Earth. (A recent post and its comments confirms that there are few Thanetonians employed there!) :
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"The Thanet Earth was exceptionally permitted on land outside Thanet Business Parks in light of its significant potential to strengthen and diversify Thanet's economic and employment base."
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Really?

14 comments:

ascu75 aka Don said...

Town centre the place has no heart. Where are the independent retailers? only large multiples can go out there giving limited choice and high prices. TDC has killed the smaller shop keepers.

Anonymous said...

Spot on as usual Bertie.

However, with regard to:

your peaceful view to the horizon, that is meant to be a real plus point for visitors, has been blighted by the positioning of Thanet Wind Farm and The London Array.

may I also add that your eardrums will be split by low flying, foreign 747s bringing in crates of foreign food to satisfy the needs of a foreign airport owner?

Stop the loonies said...

looks like someone has gone a bid mad with the "fuzzy felts"

Bertie Biggles said...

Could you elaborate 'Stop the loonies' on the 'fuzzy felts'? I regret to say I am not familiar with that term or your meaning! What exactly is your point?

Peter Checksfield said...

Bertie, you must be younger than me & Stop The Loonies...Fuzzy Felt (he was obviously referring to your map!).

Anonymous said...

It really doesn't matter what is in the 'vision for Thanet' as the Planning Department will ride rough shod over any local plan/vision/local development framework. Welcome to the concrete world of Thanet, a developers paradise.

Bertie Biggles said...

Thanks, Peter! The CPRE map is not the best!

Anonymous said...

Why does Simon Moores have such a problem with the truth?

Your article seems to be well researched and poignant, and yet he chooses to heckle for no apparant reason as to the fact that you disagree with him.

What a shallow and uneducated arguement. If that is the standard of Councillor that we have to represent us, then no wonder that Thanet is in the state that it is!

Bertie Biggles said...

23.12, I assume you are discussing Dr M's comments on the Planning item, a tale of two applications? I have a great deal of time for Cllr Moores over in Westgate as he is one of the few Conservative Cllrs in thanet to get out and about in his ward and represesent it well and tackle the issues involved.
As far as Bradgate Caravan Park's application is concerned I suspect a touch of closing ranks in adversity. My understanding is that there is an issue or two about the way this application was handled and we might have to wait and see. I am sure you have read this weeks's Your Thanet? Until the issue has been looked at by the appropriate people concerned or even by others, any comment would be idle speculation at this stage. That the consent and the way it ocurred was perverse, I have no doubts but isn't this democracy , TDC style?

Anonymous said...

Dr,. Moores' approach to anything critical is to describe it as a 'non-story'. How many 'non-stories' can there be in Thanet? Thank heavens for the bloggers pointing out inconsistencies in the council's actions. The local press (apart from YourThanet) keep quiet being too hand-in-glove with the ruling self-styled 'Thanet mafia' to analyse what is happening. It's like living back in the 1970s when the council did exactly what it liked. We do have an effective opposition here that hopefully will be strengthened by the election of Sandra Hart in December. For someone like Bertie to come out in support of a Labour candidate can't have been easy for him but let's hope others follow suit. Dane Valley had a very low-turnout last time but I'm sure Clive Hart and his team will be out there knocking on doors to encourage all disaffected Dane Valleyites to get out and vote against the ruling lot in Cecil Street.

DrM. said...

Thank you for the kind comments Bertie!

I recognise in 23:12, the hand of the "Creature of the night" here and elsewhere, busy spraying disinformation and personal abuse around in the early hours.

I never cease to be amazed that on ECR in particular, readers don't spot the very unsubtle attempts at manipulating opinion from the same unpleasant and obsessive source.

I'm very happy to say that his 'truth' and my truth are two very different things. Indeed he reminds me of a character in Orwell's 1984.

I still maintain that the sign at the Swan Inn and the caravan park application are two quite different issues; one a development, the second a signage application that cannot be connected in any argument over the planning process.

Richard Eastcliff said...

Just exactly what are you trying to imply there, Dr M? I do hope you have the sources and references to back it up.

Funny how everyone who disagrees with your hypocritical, Daily Mail world view is 'unpleasant and obsessive'. How convenient! And how easily 'amazed' you are!

Anonymous said...

Dr M. From my experience characters at TDC are far closer to 1984 than ECR could ever hope to be.

Anonymous said...

Referring to your comment on the wind farms I totally condem your attitude. W ahve to do something to cut down the green house gases and stop the polution, it is killing us all off slowly. Shame on you.
That is as bad as agreeing with the extension of the Airport which will up the gases even more and what will it do to Thanet and the rest of the Country when China Gateway goes ahead, these are the main major problems being allowed by TDC to go ahead with absolutely no thought for the future or any living animal or human being, our lives will not be worth living iof this goes ahead. It is disgraceful that the lack of intellegence given to these decisions will kill us all they should all be strung up for pushing this through.