Monday, 28 April 2008
Sent:27 April 2008 11.19
To:SusannePavelkova@aol.com; email@example.com; Richard.firstname.lastname@example.org; Richard.Alderton@ashford.gov.uk; PHILIPPA.DALE@ashford.gov.uk; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org
Subject: Otterpool quarry.Road juncion A20.
It has come to my knowledge that the site that is rapidly steaming ahead is in fact an ancient Saxon burial site where 100 years ago there was an excavation and many burial artefacts were found. Should this not be a scheduled site?
There are many very ancient manors in this area so it has been inhabited for a long time. Berwick is probably the oldest in England given by King Canute to Eadsy a priest in 1032. Bellview was the home of the Constable of Dover and Warden of the Cinque Ports in 1216-1272 and was named thus because of the beautiful view. Westenhanger Castle is in Stanford but is very much part of Bellview, Berwick and Otterpool.
Have any archaeological surveys been carried out on this and the extension of the industrial park? The road just at this junction is with Barrow Hill ( burial place).
I feel that things are being steamrollered along before essential investigations have been done. We lost a lot of crucial ancient relics when the channel tunnel was built through Saltwood and I can see the same thing happening here. The more I learn about this area the more fascinating it becomes. We should be nurturing this area for tourists and advertising the history of this area, not putting it all under concrete .
Monday, 21 April 2008
The fifth email distribution of news regarding the proposed Lorry Park on the Aldington-Smeeth borders
Member of the Executive, Ashford Borough Council
Chairman, Aldington & Bonnington Parish Council
Welcome to the fifth email distribution of news regarding the proposed Lorry Park on the Aldington-Smeeth borders.
I draw your particular attention to the very important paragraph in [blue] text below.
Thank you to all those who attended the Lorry Park Alliance meeting held on Saturday 19th April at Brabourne & Smeeth Village Hall. The meeting was extremely well attended and brings the total number of people who have attended Lorry Park Alliance meetings close to 700. To this number must be added the many, many people who have expressed their support for the Lorry Park Alliance campaign, but have not attended one of the four public meetings.
Damian Green MP was able to attend the Brabourne & Smeeth meeting and he, together with members of the Lorry Park Alliance, dealt with a variety of questions related to the proposed Lorry Park. Unfortunately, Keith Ferrin (Kent County Council Cabinet Member for Highways), felt unable to attend the meeting and, even more disappointingly, KCC failed to provide an alternative speaker to represent their views. It is a sad reflection on the state of democracy when our County Council cannot, or will not, provide a spokesperson on what is, by any standards, a major infrastructural project of widespread interest and concern to a vast number of electors in Kent. We are however fortunate that the two MPs most affected by the proposal, Michael Howard and Damian Green, have constructively participated in the public meetings.
Cllr Paul Clokie, Leader of Ashford Borough Council, sent his apologies, but did provide a statement of his views on the Lorry Park issue and parts of that statement were read out at the meeting. Of particular note are Cllr Clokie’s comments that:
"Neither I nor the Council’s officers have been presented with any clearly evidenced rationale that off-motorway parking of the sort proposed is the right solution. Even if that case were to be made, we would still need to be convinced that the site proposed is the best available and that it is sustainable in terms of the medium to long term projections for freight traffic."
"So in response to the question as to whether I support the current proposals from Kent County Council? My answer must be that ‘No I do not’ as I strongly believe that there are other solutions yet to be explored."
"The report [Channel State of Freight Report ] goes on to suggest that these lorry parks [closer to Dover than Aldington/Smeeth] should be financed by the port of Dover, which seems a very sensible proposition that places no direct financial burden on the tax payers of Kent and reflects the causal nature of the problem. "
The full text of Cllr Clokie’s statement is attached to this email.
Particular points that were raised at the meeting included:
The timescale for publication of a formal Lorry Park planning application. On the one hand Keith Ferrin stated at last week’s public meeting that KCC’s planning application would be published 6 to 8 weeks from 1st April i.e. by end May latest. On the other hand he is quoted in this week’s press as saying that “a fully detailed planning application should be ready for consultation in a year’s time”. Given that one of the Directors of KCC very recently stated that “We still don’t know if a lorry park will work technically.”, it seems probable that the planning application will not see the light of day for quite some time. If, as now seems probable, the release of the planning application is some way away, then it is unconscionable that KCC have been so premature in their announcement of the Lorry Park proposals. Such recklessness only serves to cause grossly unnecessary anxiety and blight for the residents of the area.
The charge for using the Lorry Park. Both Paul Carter (Leader of KCC) and Keith Ferrin have recently stated that it is their intention that the proposed permanent Lorry Park for 500 vehicles should be free of charge. Their apparent motivation for this is that they believe, or have been misled into believing, that at a stroke this will eliminate all unauthorised overnight lorry parking in lay-bys and in industrial estates such as Orbital Park. However, the reality is that there will always be a large number of lorry drivers who, for a variety of reasons, prefer to park outside the confines of an organised lorry park. Parking fines will not deter such drivers as the UK does not aggressively pursue the collection of fines from drivers of foreign vehicles. A free lorry park also implies that access to the Lorry Park will not be as regulated as is currently the case with commercial lorry parks. Consequently, it is inevitable that the Lorry Park will attract permanent, or semi-permanent, residents including illegal ‘O’ license operators, and will become a dumping ground or storage area for surplus vehicles. Finally, such a free facility will put out of business what few commercial lorry parks we do have in Kent and in neighbouring counties – a curious economic strategy for a Conservative-led County Council.
The involvement of Monserat Properties Ltd. Many of you will recall that some years ago this company proposed a new motorway junction at Evegate, a link road to the A2070 and the concreting over of greenfield sites in the East Stour valley. Since those proposals were firmly rebuffed by Ashford Borough Council, local parish councils and residents, Monserat has been actively lobbying the government, KCC and various quangos and has retained its controlling options over much land in the area. It is Monserat who controls the land upon which KCC proposes to put its Lorry Park and Monserat has been actively supporting KCC’s proposals. Furthermore, behind the scenes, Monserat has been supporting and funding various groups who are actively lobbying in favour of the proposed Lorry Park at Aldington-Smeeth. Paul Bartlett (Deputy Leader of Ashford Borough Council) very forcefully made the point at the meeting that if the Lorry Park were to proceed, then it would be the thin edge of the wedge with companies such as Monserat seeking to exploit the situation and infill the green fields between Smeeth and urban Ashford.
The planning decision-making process. Many people expressed grave concerns regarding the undemocratic process, where KCC would be granting themselves planning permission. It was generally considered that were this allowed to happen then it would be a gross injustice and probably in breach of residents’ statutory human rights. The Lorry Park Alliance members and Damian Green all expressed the view that the planning application should be ‘called in’ by the government (i.e. taken out of KCC’s hands) and determined by a Public Enquiry that reported to the Minister of State. At some point in the future it will be essential for us all to lobby GOSE (Government Office for the South East) and central government to ensure that this ‘call in’ takes place.
Something that only came to my attention subsequent to the close of this Saturday’s meeting is the statement by Paul Carter in the latest edition of the KCC quarterly newspaper “Around Kent”. In a full page article devoted to the proposed Lorry Park “off Church Lane, Aldington” he refers to the lorry park for 500 vehicles and goes on to say “Adjacent to this is the potential for a vast testing station to be able to carry out comprehensive tests on potential illegal vehicles and an additional 2,500 ….. parking spaces for Operation Stack”. So it now appears that he expects Aldington/Smeeth to shoulder not only the burden of the previously announced 500 vehicle permanent Lorry Park and the 2,500 vehicle operation Stack Lorry Park, but also a “vast testing station”! He goes on to say “we are trying to design an environmentally sensitive solution to the treatment of this larger area.” I cannot understand how KCC, knowing of the adverse, indeed highly critical, reaction generated by their bungled announcement of the Lorry Park proposal, could use such an underhand tactic to announce the addition of this “vast testing station”. To make an announcement of such a major project buried in an obscure publication which many immediately ‘bin’, and others such as myself never receive, takes the concept of ‘burying the bad news’ to new depths.
I will continue to keep you fully informed as matters progress. If you are aware of anyone who wishes to be kept in touch, but who has not received this email, please ask them to contact me by email so that their details can be added to the distribution list.
I must again stress that my colleagues and I are not opposed to a solution for either Operation Stack or for overnight lorry parking. However, we are opposed to these current proposals which are ill-conceived and hastily cobbled together with inadequate evaluation of alternatives and without consultation. We also consider that KCC is seeking to impose a wholly local solution to a problem that is in fact a national and pan-European issue.
Thank you all for your continuing support.
Cllr Peter Wood
Saxon Shore Ward
Member of the Executive
Ashford Borough Council
Chairman, Aldington & Bonnington Parish Council
Saturday, 19 April 2008
Leader of Ashford Borough Council
I fully recognise the problems caused by overnight lorry parking in the borough and also by operation stack, both of which have frequently caused considerable inconvenience to the residents of the borough.
Neither I nor the Council’s officers have been presented with any clearly evidenced rationale that off-motorway parking of the sort proposed is the right solution. Even if that case were to be made, we would still need to be convinced that the site proposed is the best available and that it is sustainable in terms of the medium to long term projections for freight traffic. In addition, this project is currently unfunded and the government has declared that they will not pay for it, and so I believe that this proposal is unlikely to happen in the near future.
I am a great supporter of the Quick Moveable Barrier (QMB) and as such I wish it to be given a fair test and then, if successful, extended to between Junction 8 and Junction 9 – a proposal that was I understand put forward by the government, but rejected by Kent County Council. Such a QMB would at least keep Kent moving and would also use the substantial tarmac surfaces already extant rather than concreting over 70+ acres of Kentish green field. So in response to the question as to whether I support the current proposals from Kent County Council? My answer must be that ‘No I do not’ as I strongly believe that there are other solutions yet to be explored.
This leaves the question of overnight parking should the Truck-stop at Waterbrook close – a matter which is by no means certain. This would give rise to a far more difficult problem that may eventually lead to the need to find locations for about 500 lorries (in excess of 1,000 has been mooted). I do not believe that our borough is best suited for such purposes. Particularly so, as such a lorry park would need substantial and costly on/off works as it could not be accommodated at an existing motorway junction. On balance, I favour the view recently published by the Channel Corridor Partnership that stated:
“the main need is for additional lorry parking facilities on the Channel
Corridor, preferably at or near to the major ports/Channel Tunnel.”
The report goes on to suggest that these lorry parks should be financed by the port of Dover, which seems a very sensible proposition that places no direct financial burden on the tax payers of Kent and reflects the causal nature of the problem.
Finally, I view with great unease the fact that the County Council is single-handedly seeking to remedy a situation that is in reality a national and pan-European problem and, as such, requires resolution at that level.
19th April 2008
Friday, 18 April 2008
Update for villagers - Progress the Sellindge and District Residents Association has made in the fight against the Lorry Park and Sludge Dump
- RECYCLING PLANT - 154 LORRIES PER DAY - on top of what we already have!!!!
- NOISE 24/7
- 40' HIGH BUILDING
- WATER POLLUTION
Please keep 3rd May 2008, free at 11am, for our walk/cycle/drive from Sellindge Village Hall car park, to the Airport Café. Please do come out in force and show the people of Kent we do not want their rubbish and to show Europe we don’t want the lorry park as a permanent feature on our beautiful landscape, when it will probably only be used a handful of times every year!
Once at the Airport Café we are hoping there will be live music and that you will enter into the party atmosphere!
The Committee members are:
- Ronald Lello - Chairman/Spokesman (tel. no. 01303 813140)
- Nick Taylor - Treasurer
- Margaret Ludlow - Village Networker (tel. no. 01303 813369)
- David Plumstead - Transport & Recycling
- Les Barratt - Water
- Bob Edden - Policy
- Ian Medgett - Ecology & Environment
- Penny Knight - Researcher
- Carol Taylor - Publicity
Carol can be contacted through the email address.
Thursday, 17 April 2008
From:local resident (name withheld)
Sent:25 Apr 2008 15.34
To:Richard.email@example.comCC: Robert.firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; Mick.Sutch@kent.gov.uk; Paul.Clokie@ashford.gov.uk; firstname.lastname@example.org; Howardm@parliament.uk; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org
Subject: Lorry Park - Sellindge and Aldington
I must voice my opinion with regard to the proposal to site a lorry park between Sellindge and Aldington.
The site itself is in the village of Sellindge and as a resident and knowing the amount of lorries which already come through the village the scheme would only cause more and more chaos to the already busy main road.
From:local resident (name withheld)
Sent: 25 Apr 2008 15:27
Subject: (no subject)
To:Richard.email@example.comCC: firstname.lastname@example.org; Mick.Sutch@kent.gov.uk; Paul.Carter@kent.gov.uk; Paul.Clokie@ashford.gov.uk; Richard.Alderton@ashford.gov.uk; email@example.com; Howardm@parliament.uk; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org
I must protest about the current plans to site a lorry park in Sellindge/Aldington area. The area concerned is of natural beauty and KCC are trying to 'pull the wool over our eyes', by telling us it is a disused piece of land.
This part of Kent should not have to suffer schemes like this and particularly not in areas of natural beauty.
From:local resident (name withheld)
Sent: 25 Apr 2008 15:19
Subject: (no subject)
To:Richard.email@example.comCC: Paul.Carter@kent.gov.uk; Robert.firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; Mick.Sutch@kent.gov.uk; Paul.Clokie@ashford.gov.uk; firstname.lastname@example.org; Howardm@parliament.uk; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org
So KCC seem to be trying to destroy this part of the Garden of England by building a lorry park between Sellindge and Aldington.
The villagers are in uproar - how dare the KCC try to spoil the Garden of England by proposing such a scheme ?
As you may know Sellindge is a small farming community and already houses many other facilities such as the High Speed Rail link and lorries which make their way from the Lympne Industrial site and which by the way is now being enlarged by some 50-70%.
To build a lorry park on what is obviously an area of outstanding natural beauty with wildlife and traditional woodland flowers there already, is not a good scheme.
We fear that the KCC Conservative party will never be voted for again.
In addition I would add that it seems to be that KCC are doing all they can to ensure The Garden of England will gradually become the Dustbin of England.
From:local resident (name withheld)
Sent: 23 Apr 2008 14:27
Subject: Proposed Lorry Park
So your true intentions for a lorry park in Kent are now revealed in the recent article in Around Kent, much as everyone suspected. No wonder that this part of a once beautiful county are so much against it. How can Kent County Council propose such a thing when their remit should be to PROTECT the County, not destroy it?????? Surely, no one will ever elect a Tory KCC in future.
From: local resident (name withheld)
Sent: 20 March 2008 11.19
To: Carter, Paul - LEADER
Subject: Anaerobic Digestion and Lorry Park at Sellindge.
As a resident of Sellindge on the A20, I have witnessed the increase of heavy traffic, and a lorry park that would over double the population of Sellindge with all the drivers at the Ashford end, and a smelly dirty industrial waste plant the Folkestone end I want to voice my objections to in the strongest manner. The lorry park would be quite inadequate as over 9000 lorries pass daily on the M20 and the rate of increase is supposed to be by 15% yearly and int he plans Ref YO8/0124/SH, for the sludge plant it guesses an extra 150 heavy lorry movements daily, the existing A20 is not up to that amount of traffic as it is in need of constant repair as large holes appear daily.
The light pollution, smells, noise and the death of wild life is not viable. When the Converter station was built in Church Lane, it was on a nesting site where all the plovers/lapwings nested, they were driven away and have not come back to any nearby location. I noticed yesterday that where all the trees have been cut down near the Lympne Industrial Estate that there are dead badgers, so their habitat has been disturbed already. We in Sellindge and the surrounding villages do not want the Garden of England to be covered with concrete and an industrial waste plant here. It is unsuitable planning. Yours sincerely.
From: local resident (name withheld)
Sent: 11 April 2008 10:34
To: Carter, Paul - LEADER
Subject: Sellindge Sludge
I am emailing you not surprisingly to express our concern over the proposals for a Sludge Site and Lorry park in and around Sellindge. My husband and I have taken a huge financial risk buying a property in Sellindge but felt the quality of life for our two daughters was worth the risk.
We moved to Sellindge last February and have enjoyed every day living in the village. Our daughters attend the nursery and our eldest will be starting the local primary school in September.
Now we hear the proposals for destroying our community we are wondering why we tried to improve our quality of life by moving out of town. We both work so hard and feel great bitterness and resentment that such proposals can and will negatively affect our lives if allowed to go ahead.
My concerns at present are the quality of life that will be affected but I am sure if this goes ahead it will have a huge financial implication on us. Our home is our home but also our childrens futures, which some people who live somewhere else seem quite happy to take away from us as it doesn't affect them !!
My husband and I strongly oppose the plans and desparately hope sense prevails and both proposals are stopped !!
Paul Carter's response was the same to these................
Subject: RE: as appropriate
RE: PROPOSED LORRY PARK
Thank you for taking the time to write to me about the proposal to create a lorry park adjacent to the M20 east of Sellindge.
Your comments have been noted and are appreciated.
You will no doubt be aware that Operation Stack is invoked when Channel Ferry or Channel Tunnel crossings are disrupted, generally because of inclement weather or industrial action. This can happen between 8 and 12 times a year, closing long stretches of the M20 to local traffic so that lorries bound for the port can be parked on the motorway.
The ensuing traffic chaos this brings to the county not only costs the economy millions of pounds, it also causes widespread inconvenience to people living in, working in and visiting Kent.
In addition, the problem of a lack of secure overnight parking for lorries results in them using lay-bys and side streets causing damage and pollution and leaving behind waste and litter. Demand has been intensified due to drivers’ hours’ legislation which means drivers have to stop in Kent on the inward part of their journey.
It has been suggested that the Port of Dover or Eurotunnel should fund a solution to Operation Stack. However as much of the country’s trade with Continental Europe passes through Kent, this is very much a national problem, which is why we have been pressing the Government for several years to resolve the issue.
With no other options on the table and given the effects on Kent’s economy and communities of Operation Stack and overnight HGV parking on local roads we decided that we must lead the way on finding a permanent solution.
Working with other agencies we carried out a study which found that there was a need for a lorry park in Kent and that it should be dual purpose. As well as providing secure overnight parking it should be available in the event of Operation Stack. The Freight Transport Association supports this proposal. We agreed with the Department for Transport that we would identify a preferred site.
The severe shortage of suitable secure overnight parking facilities means that drivers are forced to stop in unsuitable places such as lay-bys, business estates and some near to residential properties. This leads to inconvenience to local communities and environmental problems. This is particularly evident in Dover and Ashford and to a lesser extent in Shepway.
In order for the lorry park to provide an effective and workable alternative to Operation Stack, it has to be along the M20 corridor and fairly close to the Channel crossings. We looked at a number of sites before reaching a decision about which site was our preferred location.
Our preferred site is between junctions 10 & 11 on the south side of the M20 between Sellindge and Aldington.
The site, which covers more than 70 acres, was chosen for its good connectivity and proximity to the Channel Tunnel and Dover Docks and because it is isolated from built-up areas. The site is very close to the M20 keeping access roads to a minimum and therefore reducing the impact on the local environment. It is also shielded from view by the Sellindge Converter Station to the east, the M20 to the north, a railway embankment to the south and woodland to the west. There are no planning designations such as AONB or Special Landscape Area applied to this area.
To access the site, we propose on and off slip roads to and from the M20 on both east and west bound carriageways. The site will link to the eastbound carriageway via an overbridge or a tunnel if ground conditions permit. The site will not have access on to the A20.
The proposed site will provide 500 secure overnight parking spaces for HGVs and an overflow area for up to 2,500 additional HGVs during Operation Stack. The site will have appropriate security, a properly laid out parking area for HGVs, a canteen providing refreshments, toilets, showers and fuel. The remainder of the site will be kept as green as possible and extensive and sympathetic landscaping will be used to further reduce the visual impact.
I have said that the cost of building a lorry park should not fall on Kent’s tax payers. Currently 75% of the lorries crossing the Channel are foreign registered and enjoy cheaper costs than UK firms. I believe the best way to generate the capital to build and run the site is by introducing a vignette system of charges on HGVs entering the country, similar to systems already operating in Austria and Switzerland, we have proposed this to the Government. UK hauliers could be rebated by a corresponding reduction in Vehicle Excise Duty.
This would mean that overnight HGV parking would be free at the lorry park, encouraging HGV drivers to use it. The current cost a night to park on a licensed site is around £20.
The proposal means that there will be no excuse for HGV drivers to park on local roads overnight. At the same time HGV parking ban on local roads can be effectively enforced and we should see an end to lorries parking on verges and lay-bys in many parts of the county. We are proposing two further secure overnight lorry parks; one along the M2 corridor and the second along the M25.
We are in the early stage of the process; we have discussed the aims of the proposal with the Highways Agency, Kent Police, Kent Fire & Rescue Service and Ashford Borough Council. Their comments are expected by the end of April 2008.
This will be followed by a detailed planning process which will include a full public consultation.
I hope that this clarifies the situation and will allay your concerns.
Leader of Kent County Council
Wednesday, 9 April 2008
This website http://www.slurry.org.uk/ (stands for Sludge/ lorry) enables any news to be spread quickly without anybody else's involvement.
This campaign is amazingly very intensive but we still need your help. We still have time to state our objections to:
Cllr Paul.Carter@kent.gov.uk - leader of KCC,
Mick.Sutch@kent.gov.uk - head of planning KCC,
Cllr Paul.Clokie@ashford.gov.uk - leader of Ashford Borough Council.
Richard.Alderton@ashford.gov.uk - head of planning and development,
email@example.com - Damian Green Ashford MP
Howardm@parliament.uk - Michael Howard Folkestone and Hythe MP firstname.lastname@example.org
and of course all the local papers.
Keep May 3rd 2008 at 11am free to walk from the Village Hall to the Airport Cafe for a bit of a party.
The articles contained in this website are for general informational purposes only and have been provided by various sources including the public, newspaper content and local bodies. These articles are then presented by Sellindge & District Residents Association on this website, and while we endeavour to keep the information up to date and correct, we make no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, about the completeness, accuracy, reliability, suitability or availability with respect to the website or the information, products, services, or related graphics contained on the website for any purpose. Any reliance you place on such information is therefore strictly at your own risk. In no event will we be liable for any loss or damage including without limitation, indirect or consequential loss or damage, or any loss or damage whatsoever arising from loss of data or profits arising out of, or in connection with, the use of this website.
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