Fordwich Town Council

Fordwich Town Council

Welcome to Fordwich

Special announcement

Details for the proposed development off Well Lane

12 – 01 – 2021

Denton Homes, who have the development option on the Plantation site, know that it is in their commercial interest to develop a proposal that has the support of Fordwich Town Council before submitting a formal planning application. Thus, this early proposal is being submitted to the Town Council by Denton Homes, for your consideration.

 This proposal for (18) homes [16 for sale and 2 for rental] comes as a result of some negotiation on the initial 40 home scheme that they originally floated with the Town Council in September 2020. Members of the Fordwich Future Sub-Group have been in dialogue with Denton Homes and their consultant team to seek to inform them of our interest in creating an Historic Country Park in and around Fordwich. We advised Denton that the Sub-Group were undertaking necessary research to safeguard the 20+ hectares in perpetuity by changing its current designation in the new Canterbury Local Plan, which is currently being prepared and expected to be adopted by July 2022.

 Denton Homes have submitted the Planation for consideration as a housing site by the City Council within the new Local Plan. If they are successful, it would give the green light for a planning application. If the land retains its current designation, or its future is protected further by enhanced designation (eg Nature Reserve, SSSI, etc), it will still be owned by remote investment company who will at best do nothing with it, and at worst, fence most of it off, or seek to gain some commercial benefit either by some alternative commercial uses or resubmitting for housing at some point in the future…. In other words, the problem will not go away.

 Our solution is to potentially agree to some limited development on the Well Lane part of the site, and the remaining 18+ Hectares to be gifted to a new Trust or the Town Council, probably with covenants to restrict its use for recreational purposes, along with the formation of a small car park and two houses to provide income generating assets sufficient to provide a salary in perpetuity for a Warden to enable the land to be effectively managed. If an agreement can be reached, it would need to be set out in a legal agreement to ensure that it could not be changed, or if it was, the Town’s support would evaporate. This joint proposal would then be submitted to the City Council for consideration for the Local Plan which we believe would be favourably considered as it both facilitates the formation of Phase 1 of the Historic Country Park and helps to deliver some of the additional new housing required by Canterbury.

Land to the south of Fordwich, off Well Lane – Country Park and associated small-scale residential development. January 2021 Denton Homes is promoting a scheme that respects the size and environment of the historic town of Fordwich. The land is to the south of the town off Well Lane. The scheme will create a Country Park with appropriate leisure activities and associated smallscale residential development. The wider Country Park area will open access to the and adjacent to the River Stour. It will become a community facility that will be available to existing residents and visitors. The ambition is that this will form part of a wider strategic network of Country Parks in Kent. In summary: • This scheme will create a Country Park – that will be transferred to a Trust to ensure that Fordwich residents can manage the Park and there will be no further residential development. • The associated residential scheme that will allow this to happen will see 16 market homes bought forward. This includes: ▪ 4 – 3-bed homes ▪ 12 – 4-5 bed homes*. * All 4-5 bed homes have a double garage and 12.5metre deep rear garden. • An additional two homes (750sft each) will be built by the applicant. These will be offered to the Private Rental Sector. The monies raised from these rentals will form part of an Endowment Fund that will generate the income needed to fund the maintenance of the Country Park. • Any affordable housing contribution will be made for off-site provision. • The opening up of vehicle and pedestrian routes into the Country Park will improve access to wider use of the land next to the river for community use. Hard standing space will be provided to enable parking for visitors. • Integral to the scheme will be the need to ensure that existing and future traffic flows will work safely with any proposed road layouts. • Denton Homes will continue to provide consultancy support (via Carter Jonas) to groups nominated by the Town Council to help develop a strategic vision for Fordwich. • Additional work still needs to be carried out to understand how the site can connect into the existing footpath which runs along High Street so that pedestrians can transition from the site into the town.

End special announcement

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Fordwich is a beautiful and ancient port on the River Great Stour, two miles downstream from the City of Canterbury in Kent.

Although Fordwich has never boasted more than a few hundred inhabitants, its right to style itself a town dates from 1184, when King Henry II granted it a Merchant Gild Charter, reflecting its importance as the de facto port for Canterbury.

In the Domesday Book, it was described as a small burgh, one of only seven burghs in Kent. Since the 13th century, Fordwich has been involved with the Cinque Ports through its geographical and institutional links with Sandwich.

Fordwich Town Council today is, in legal terms, a parish council composed of five members either elected, or more usually appointed. The original Fordwich corporation, with its liberty and privileges, was abolished in the local government reorganisation of 1886.

However, the chairman of the Council is styled the Mayor, and on ceremonial occasions wears a chain of office as well as other mayoral accoutrements. By custom the Mayor also serves as Mayor Deputy to the Mayor of Sandwich, thus preserving the historic Cinque Ports link.

Fordwich Town Council meets once a month, except in August and December, generally on the last Wednesday of the month.

Meetings are usually held in the historic Town Hall, built in 1544. On occasions meetings may take place in other locations, such as the Old School House

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