Main Changes to Local Plan 2030

Policy S52 - Aldington, Land South of Goldwell Court (MC95)

Policy S52 - Aldington, Land south of Goldwell Manor Farm

S52

This site is located on the north eastern entrance to the village of Aldington and is currently agricultural fields situated between a site allocated for residential development (policy S51) to the south, and Goldwell Manor Farm to the north. The area of Goldwell Manor Farm adjoining the site is in operation as a small rural business park, Goldwell Court.

On the opposite side of Goldwell Lane is the former surgery, now an Osteopathy clinic, and the Aldington Eco Centre. The site is located in close proximity to the village hall/recreation field and Primary School, and a number of other local services in the village centre. The site is currently in use as a paddock.

The topography and landscape setting of the site is significant, as Aldington sits on top of the Greensand Ridge, and the North Downs Frame views to the north. From within the site, and from Goldwell Lane, there are long and important views of the Grade I listed Aldington Church, Court Lodge Farm and the remains of the Archbishops Palace which are also listed. Situated 1km away from the village to the east, this cluster of listed buildings is included within a Conservation Area designation, and together forms an important heritage asset and a key feature in the landscape as it is located prominently on higher ground. For these reasons, it is concluded that only single depth, frontage development is suitable in this location to enable retention of these key vistas and protection of the wider landscape character.

At around 0.8ha, the site is suitable for up to 20 dwellings, depending on design and layout. Given the landscape character and vistas of the heritage assets, only single or two storey buildings would be appropriate here. There is a PRoW located along the southern edge of the site which must be retained and if possible enhanced, in collaboration with the development of Site S51. The important views from this footpath towards the site, and across the Greensand Ridgeway towards the church, must be retained by providing gaps in the built frontage and any screening that should also be provided to lessen the visual impact of the development from this wider setting.

There is currently an agricultural vehicle access on the northern area of the site in Goldwell Lane, however it is recommended that a new vehicle access is created for the development in the south, at the point shown on the policies map. This would ensure the access is located within the 30mph zone.

The boundary between the site and most of the road frontage is currently defined by an established mature hedgerow, and to preserve the existing character it is recommended that this be retained within the development layout where possible. It is suggested that a set back layout similar to that of the nearby Church View development would achieve this aim.

Due to the close proximity to the village public open space and equipped play area from the site, no on-site provision is required as part of this development, but there are opportunities through financial contributions to provide enhancements to this area. A footpath connection to the existing footways along Goldwell Lane must be provided.

Southern Water’s assessment has revealed that additional sewerage infrastructure would be required to serve the proposed development. The development will therefore be required to make a connection to the nearest point of adequate capacity in the sewerage network. Early liaison should take place with the service provider in this regard.

POLICY S52 – Aldington - Land south of Goldwell Manor Farm

The site in south of Goldwell Court is proposed for residential development of up to 20 dwellings. Development proposals for this site shall:

  1. Be designed and laid out in such a way as to conserve the mature hedgerow along the road frontage if possible, retain gaps in the built frontage to preserve views and vistas through the site to the heritage assets and also consider the wider landscape settings, the topography of the site and Greensand Ridge location. Dwellings should be a maximum of 2 storeys in height;
  2. Retain and enhance the PRoW adjoining the site;
  3. Provide vehicle access from Goldwell Lane, as shown on the policies map, and pedestrian footways to connect to the village centre and the local services;
  4. Provide a soft landscaped boundary along the eastern and northern edges of the site, which should include mature tree planting in places to lessen the visual impact of the development on the wider landscape, but also enable the longer views to be retained towards the heritage assets cluster around the church;
  5. Provide a connection to the nearest point of adequate capacity in the sewerage network, in collaboration with the service provider;
  6. Provide contributions towards the enhancement or maintenance of the nearby public open space and equipped play area provision.