Main Changes to Local Plan 2030

Policy S60 - St.Michaels (Tenterden), Land at Pope House Farm (MC103)

Policy S60 – St.Michaels, Pope House Farm

Key: Indicative Development area           Access Road      

This site is located on the A28, Ashford Road, on the northern entrance to the built up settlement of St.Michaels. The settlement of St.Michaels contains a number of local services, such as schools, shops and good transport connections. The settlement also forms part of Tenterden, which is a main service centre in the Borough with a large number of services available.

The site is currently agricultural, with large buildings in place around Pope House Farm in the southern nib, and two fields making up the remaining area. These fields have a distinct north south boundary line in the centre, which is defined by a mature tree and hedgerow and also a natural drainage ditch. The boundaries of the site are also largely defined by tree and hedgerow boundaries and the site is flat with long views to the wider countryside.

The London Beach Golf Club and Hotel and Little Silver Hotel are situated to the west of the site on the opposite side of the A28, but are either well set back from the road frontage or well screened. There are also a number of large detached properties along Ashford Rd to the south, west and north of the site, with Sicklefield House, directly adjacent to the north. To the south of the site, is Pope Farm House, which is a Grade ll Listed building and associated oast and other buildings of heritage importance. Beyond this is a narrow rural lane, Pope House Lane, which serves a few large properties to the south.

Parts of this site are considered suitable for a residential development of around 50 dwellings, depending on design and layout. These area suitable for resdiential development are broadly defined in shading on the policies map above, and is approximately 1.5ha in size. The area identifed does not include the northern and most easterly parts of the site which have the constraint of underground gas mains, or would cause a detrimental visual impact on the wider landscape.

The site adjoins the open countryside to the east and the adjoining residential areas to the south currently consist of mainly of large detached properties, some of which are listed. Therefore the scale and density of new development in the eastern and southern parts of the site should also be relatively low. In the western area of the site, particularly along road frontage, slightly higher densities can be achieved but overall, the site is suitable only for net residential densities with an average of 30 dph.

The primary vehicle access will be provided directly on to the A28, as shown in the policies map. The current access which serves the Pope House Farm and Oast House properties must be retained to serve these dwellings. A pedestrian footway connection must be made to the current network.

Due to the site's heritage and the features of the adjoining listed building and housing cluster around it, high quality design must be achieved within the new development, in addition to a suitable buffer area around this heritage cluster. However, development around this location also has the opportunity to provide an enhanced setting to the the listed building with the removal of the large agricultural buildings which currently lie in close proximity.

The impact on trees and biodiversity must be assessed prior to any development as there are a number of mature trees and hedgerows and ponds and drainage ditches in and around the site boundary. These should also be taken into consideration in the design and layout of the site, and incorporated where possible to limit the impact of the built development on the wider landscape. Additional structural screening and planting will be required around the development, particularly on the north eastern boundary where the site is visible in the wider landscape.

The established hedgerow boundary on the road frontage should be retained where possible, where not impacted by the access arrangements. The northern areas of the site should be designed as natural open space areas with the potential to provide ecological zones.

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 S60 - St.Michaels, Land at Pope House Farm

The site at Pope House farm is proposed for residential development with an indicative capacity of 50 dwellings.

Development proposals for this site shall:

  1. Be designed and laid out in such a way as to protect and enhance the character and setting of the adjoining listed building and associated properties. Particular attention also needs to be given to the eastern area of the site, where it adjoins the open countryside and is visible in the wider landscape. Densities should reflect the surrounding character of these locations and overall the site density should be around 30dph;
  2. Provide primary vehicle access on Ashford Road, as shown on the policies map;
  3. provide new pedestrian routes throughout the development and connections to existing urban and rural routes and local services, with the potential of a pedestrian crossing explored with the Highway Authority;
  4. Retain the existing mature trees and hedgerows boundaries where possible and enhance the planting in the north eastern areas, to screen the development of the site from the wider countryside and create additional soft landscaping throughout the site to lessen the visual impact of the development;
  5. Provide appropriate ecological mitigation and provision of ecological corridors through the site and an area of open recreation space in the northern areas of the site which are not identified for residential development;
  6. Provide a connection to the nearest point of adequate capacity in the sewerage network, in collaboration with the service provider.