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Reaction to withdrawal of Lodge Hill planning application

6 September 2017

In 2014 Medway Council, in its capacity as the local planning authority, was resolved to approve the outline planning application for a mixed use development including 5,000 homes at Lodge Hill in Chattenden on the Hoo Peninsula. 

The site was then designated as a Special Site of Scientific Interest (SSSI) which led to the application being referred to a Public Inquiry scheduled to take place in March 2018.

Last night (5 September) it was announced that the Defence Infrastructure Organisation and the Homes and Communities Agency have decided to withdraw the planning application and therefore the Public Inquiry will not go ahead.

Reaction to the news

Cllr Alan Jarrett, Leader of Medway Council, said of the news:

“I am appalled this important scheme is going back to the drawing board, further delaying a project which would create jobs and much needed homes for the area. A succession of agencies have let the people of Medway down by constantly delaying this important site which has huge potential.

“A great deal of work has gone into establishing that the site is a sustainable location for a new development, and owners and developers need to continue to push forward with providing high quality, energy efficient homes for our existing residents, their families in the years to come and those looking to relocate here – and not forgetting the extensive employment opportunities the site could offer residents.

“While I am hugely disappointed that the current scheme for Lodge Hill has been withdrawn, I now eagerly await the new plans expected to be put forward by the applicants in the coming months. It’s time for agencies to get off the fence and bring this site forward for development.

“By 2035 we must build 30,000 new homes to keep up with our expanding population and therefore each and every suitable development site is key.

“Medway’s extensive 20-year regeneration plan is well and truly underway and this important site is part of our ambitious vision of becoming a leading waterfront university city of 330,000 people. Over the next ten years residents, visitors, businesses and those from further afield, will absolutely recognise Medway as an increasingly desirable place to live, work, learn and visit."