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Farmland at Cooting Downs which would have been lost to the huge development proposed in the previous Local Plan. William Turrell 16 October 2022

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Joint statement on new draft Local Plan

This is a joint statement by Conserve Adisham's Rural Environment and Watch Over Adisham's Woods

We thank Canterbury City Council for removing the "Cooting Farm Garden Community" (policy R1) from the latest draft plan. This effective "new town" would have caused huge, unresolvable problems: 

  • irreversible loss of historic and open North Downs countryside

  • destruction of hundreds of acres of prime, versatile farmland

  • the creation of a large conurbation out of Adisham and Aylesham - something neither community wants

We remain convinced transport, water and sewage infrastructure would struggle to cope. 

We predicted a significant rise in dangerous particulates, and anticipated appreciable light pollution.

In addition to the loss of Adisham's close, rural community, the urbanisation of the area would have undoubtedly meant similar loss or degradation of wildlife habitat and important archaeological remains.

The development was to have been adjacent to Adisham's 12 registered Ancient Woods and the Kent Downs National Landscape (formerly AONB). Walkers, cyclists, and riders use the many footpaths and bridleways to quietly enjoy the countryside. 

The condition and scenery of this network, which includes the popular North Downs Way national trail, would surely have suffered with housebuilding on this scale, likewise the safety and enjoyment of those using our National Cycle route.

Cancelling this scheme has also averted significant further pressure on the regional water supply, lowering the risk of pollution events with serious consequences for the health and habitability of our part of East Kent.

Adisham is prepared to take its share of housing meeting genuine housing need. We call upon the council to work with others in Kent to determine what the county's genuine local housing need actually is. 

We must avoid our district suffering due to national government's numbers-driven housing policy; one that merely feeds the national and international market while failing those who need it.