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Bearsted & Thurnham Society urge action over Woodcut Farm

Wednesday 8th February 2017


THE Bearsted and Thurnham Society has expressed dismay that an appeal has been lodged against planning refusal for Woodcut Farm near junction 8 on the A20.

The society claims it is that it is “a wholly speculative mixed commercial development on 50 acres” of green field land by Roxhill Developments.

An application for a commercial scheme was turned down last year by Maidstone Borough Council.

In a letter to society members, it states: “This news has come as a massive disappointment. With the overwhelming support of local people, MBC has always refused applications for large scale commercial development around Junction 8, but the Society is fearful that it may now be prepared to accept it!”

The society is joined by the local MP, Leeds Castle boss Sir David Steel and numerous local borough, county and parish councillors who are also aghast the plan has resurfaced.

In February last year 2016, MBC published its Draft Maidstone Borough Local Plan and identified Woodcut Farm as a potential employment site.

After the Local Plan inquiry was held, the inspector Robert Mellor did not suggest it was struck from it in his interim report.

MBC sources say it has to keep Woodcut Farm alive simply because the authority can show employment opportunities at the site in line with its massive house building plans.

MBC has confirmed that an appeal has been lodged against the refusal last June.

There is likely to be another public inquiry.

THE Bearsted and Thurnham Society has urged people to contact the government planning inspector with objections by March 10. Comments should be sent to : or in writing to her at: Room 3/0, Temple Quay House, 2 The Square, Bristol  BS1 6PN quoting reference APP/U2235/W/16/3165998. 

Objectors can also contact Paul Carter, leader Kent County Council at or write to him at Cllr Paul Carter CBE, Leader, Kent County Council, County Hall, Maidstone, Kent ME14 1XQ

Contact borough councillors:

Cllr Mike Cuming (Bearsted Ward) –

Cllr Gill Fort (Leeds Ward) -

Cllr Patrik Garten (North Downs Ward) -

Cllr Mike Revell (Bearsted Ward)

Cllr Val Springett (Bearsted Ward) -

Cllr Nick de Wiggondene (Detling & Thurnham Ward) -