Local Plan to 2030 Regulation 19 - Publication June 2016

Comment ID ALP/2104
Document Section Local Plan to 2030 - Publication Draft SITE POLICIES Ashford Urban Area Kennard Way, Henwood Land at Kennard Way [View all comments on this section]
Respondent Swan Property Ltd (Company) [View all comments by this respondent]
Agent David Harvey
Response Date 09 Aug 2016
Do you consider this part of the document is Sound? Yes
On which grounds do you consider the document unsound? (if applicable)
Do you consider the Document is Legally Compliant? Yes

I write regarding the above consultation on the Publication Version of the Ashford Local Plan 2030 with specific reference to the draft allocation, under Policy S9, of land at Kennard Way in Henwood for up to 25 dwellings.

The allocation for residential development within the emerging plan of the land at Kennard Way, Henwood is supported. This letter relates to two Representation forms which deal separately with Policy S9 and Paragraph 4.109 of the emerging plan; Policy S9 is considered to be sound whilst an amendment is proposed to Paragraph 4.109 to ensure it takes a justified approach to the development of the site.


The Kennard Way site has been the subject of ongoing representations throughout the current Local Plan process, in particular via a letter on the 28th April 2015, and previously during the preparation of the Urban Sites Development Plan Document, adopted in 2012. Those representations have made the case that the delivery of the site for employment uses has been prevented over a considerable period of time by a combination of site specific access and marketability constraints together with restrictions which were placed on the previous planning consent, which was allowed to lapse in July 2009, to only allow B1(c) light industrial uses to be situated on the site.

Against that context Paragraph 22 of the NPPF makes clear that planning policies should avoid the long term protection of sites allocated for employment use where there is no reasonable prospect of a site being used for that purpose.

The Inspector who examined the Urban Sites Development Plan Document concluded in respect of the site:

“It appears that constraints on this site, such as access, separation from the main employment uses, and proximity to residential development, mean that development for employment purposes may not be an attractive proposition. However, there is insufficient information to indicate that residential development would be a feasible alternative, particularly in respect of access, and no modification to the Plan is necessary”.

The Inspector’s comments reflected the fact that the representations on the Urban Sites DPD only sought to remove the previous employment allocation of the land, but then does acknowledge the site has constraints which make it unattractive for employment development. Since that time the issue he identified in respect of residential access have now been addressed by the completion of the residential scheme immediately to the east which already provides the means to directly access the Swan Property land from Kennard Way

Whilst adjacent to the Henwood Industrial Estate the Kennard Way site is also immediately adjacent to both established and relatively recent residential developments. Against that context, and the above background, it is considered appropriate and suitable for the site to be allocated for residential purposes within the emerging Local Plan.

Draft Policy S9 – Land at Kennard Way, Henwood

Draft Policy S9 is therefore considered to be sound.

The draft Policy has been Positively Prepared, in that it seeks to allocate an appropriately located site within the Ashford Urban Area for residential development which will contribute to the Council meeting its objectively assessed housing need for the plan period.

The decision to allocate the land for residential development, rather than to reallocate it for employment purposes, is Justified, in that it is a decision based on a robust and credible evidence base regarding both the site being suitable and appropriate for residential development and the constraints present which have previously prevented the delivery of the site for employment uses.

Draft Policy S9 is Effective, in that the landowners have confirmed the site is immediately available and deliverable for residential development within the plan period.

The allocation of the land at Kennard Way is Consistent with National Policy, particularly in the context of Paragraph 22 of the NPPF which is highlighted in this representation.


What changes do you suggest to make the document legally compliant or sound?
Do you consider it necessary to participate at the oral part of the examination? Yes
Does your representation relate to an omission site (a site that has not been included). For example a site for Housing, Employment, Travellers, or Local Green Spaces. No
Please supply details of the omission site.