Planning Application

The planning application has now been published on Shepway’s website and is now open for comments:

The reference is Y17/1042/SH

The best way to comment is online via the Planning Application portal. If you are intending to submit a long comment we suggest you draft it in word first and then copy and paste it to the portal to avoid being timed out.

Alternatively you can email you comments to quoting the reference or put your comments in writing to the council:

Planning Dept
Shepway District Council
Civic Centre,
Castle Hill Avenue,
Kent CT20 2QY

If you choose to comment by post or by email please make sure your comments are acknowledged.

The consultation period is normally just 21 days from the date of publication. We believe that the council will accept late comments but please try to meet the deadline if possible.


Your comments need to be based on material planning considerations and planning policy not emotion.

Material planning considerations include:

National and Local Planning Policy

Relevant views of Consultees,

Factors on the ground,

Parking, Highway safety and traffic,

Effect on Scheduled ancient monuments (the Canal),

Layout and density of buildings,

Design, appearance and materials,

Nature conservation,

Disabled persons access

Previous planning decisions (previous Inspectors decision in 2004)

The following are not material planning considerations:

Impact on the value of property,

Damage to property,

Disturbance during building works

Other matters controlled by the Building Regulations or other non planning legislation.

PLEASE USE YOUR OWN WORDS – if we all submit exactly the same wording there is a risk it will be treated as just one comment.

The key issue will be whether the public benefits from the new leisure centre, so called improvements to the canal, open space and promenade and the new housing including affordable housing outweigh the harm to the setting of the canal and the loss of open space and the wonderful vistas.


To get some ideas on the sort of thing you might say re the harm to the canal please read the information on our website including Historic England’s letter dated 2.6.16

Open Space

Under the existing local plan Princes Parade is protected by two policies – TM8 and LR9.

POLICY LR9 The District Planning Authority will provide an adequate level of public open space for leisure, recreational and amenity purposes, by protecting existing and potential areas of open space and by facilitating new provision by means of negotiation and agreement.

Loss of open space
Areas of open space of recreation, leisure or amenity value or potential as identified on the Proposals Map will be safeguarded. Development proposals which would result in a net loss of such space will only be permitted if:-

a) sufficient alternative open space exists;

b) development does not result in an unacceptable loss in local environmental quality;

c) it is the best means of securing an improved or alternative recreational facility of at least equivalent community benefit having regard to any deficiencies in the locality.

Provision of new open space
In deciding planning applications for residential development within areas where an open space deficiency exists or will be created, the District Planning Authority will be guided by the following criteria:-

i) Sites of 25 or more dwellings should provide open space to the standard of 2.43 hectares (6 acres) per 1,000 population. Where full provision on site would not be appropriate or desirable the space needed may be met by commuted sum payment towards the provision or improvement of open space nearby on a scale related to the size and scale of the development;

ii) Sites for less than 25 dwellings should contribute towards the provision and improvement of open space on a scale related to the size and nature of the development.

POLICY TM8 Planning permission will be granted for recreational/community facilities on land at Princes Parade, Hythe as shown on the Proposals Map subject to the following criteria:-

a) The use should take advantage of, and enhance the appearance of, the Canal and the coastline

  1. b) The majority of the site should remain open
  2. c) Proposals should not adversely affect the character and setting of the Scheduled Ancient Monument
  3. d) Built development will only be permitted if justified as essential to the use, and should be small scale, low rise and of a high quality design.

The proposed development is contrary to both these polices – particularly TM8. For planning permission to be granted the applicant will have to show that the public benefit of the development justifies departure from the local plan.

(Note that these policies will not be included in the new local plan that Shepway is just finalising. They will be replaced by policy UA18 the latest version of which you can read on page 100 of this draft  

If adopted into the Local Plan this policy would permit development on Princes Parade – planning permission would almost certainly be granted. Hence the importance of taking part in the next local plan consultation which is likely to be in the autumn of 2017. )

When commenting on the open space aspect you might like to personalise your comment by talking about what the site means to you now and what impact it would have on you should the site be developed.

Other issues you might like to comment on include:

Impact on the wildlife
Diversion of the road (but make sure that you are clear that this is not your only objection to the development)
The impact of the lighting/loss of dark skies
Stability of the land
Design and height of the proposed buildings (again making it clear that you don’t think any building would be acceptable)
Financial viability of the leisure centre
Alternative site for the leisure centre

For all these points please refer to the detailed reports (including the Environmental Impact Report) which are included in the planning application to make sure that your comments are based on facts. Feel free to challenge observations made in these reports by the council’s consultants – they aren’t always right.

There are some complex points to be made about housing numbers/need. We will deal with them and any other technical points in our own personal submissions having taken advice from our Planning Aid volunteer.

You might also like to read the pre -application advice given to the land owning side of the council by the council’s planning department. Preapplication advice 20.7.17

And if you haven’t already, please sign up as a member of Save Princes Parade. The more members we have, the more authority we will have when speaking in behalf of the group at meetings etc . You can sign up here.