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Sunday, 30 October 2016


There are various rumours in circulation fueled by local media streams that contractors are being appointed in connection with the proposed Otterpool Park New Town. Details of any appointments are detailed below in the Lympne Parish Council News. 

Here at S&DRA, we are firm believers in the elected few representing the views of the Parishioners or the electorate. Whilst the majority of our so called representatives have their own agendas, disenfranchising local residents, we are heartened to see Lympne Parish Council acting as servants of the Lympne Parishioners and informing of their actions. - Well done Lympne PC.
We also know the Monks Horton Parish Meeting have been approached by Susan Priest in her quest to get them 'on board' to support the New Town bid. We are happy to tell you that the Monks Horton Chairman, after consultation, refused to entertain Ms Priest and her entourage, stating that MHPM are firmly opposed to the Otterpool Park New Town development.- Well done Monks Horton.

From the Lympne Parish Council News:

The potential extent of Shepway District Council's proposed Garden Town will engulf our village and our neighbour's. 

SHEPWAY DISTRICT COUNCIL are pursuing their plans for a town of up to 12000 new houses centred around Otterpool lane and the A20.From the views received to date, the opinion of the vast majority of the people of the Parish of Lympne are against the proposals and,as your Councillors,we will always aim to represent you and your opinions in any dealings with SDC. It is therefore really important that you communicate your views to us and let us know if you are for or against the plan; it is vital that we know what you are thinking; email the Parish Council at

A meeting was arranged for the 5th October by Susan Priest, who is a Corporate Director at SDC, to discuss communications between us in relation to this proposal. On the day, and to our surprise, three other key members of their development team, Chris Lewis Jenny Hollingsbee and Julia Wallace accompanied her. Your LPC Chairman introduced us and stated that following a recent petition the overwhelming majority of villagers were against the plan and that was the position that we would uphold. There then followed a presentation by Shepway District Council during which they advised us that the scheme was currently at a very early stage and that the investigations so far comprised of commissioning various companies to carry out surveys on roads and infrastructure. 
They are also sending large groups of council representatives all over the country visiting new large developments to gather information.These investigations and surveys by SDC will result in a consultation by them later during the autumn when hopefully the conclusions of the exercises will be released.

It should be noted that to date Lympne Parish Council have not entered into any consultation with SDC but merely listened to their reports.We will update you with any news or information that we have each month in this newsletter. 

To confirm; at a Parish Councillors Meeting on 7th June this year, 27 Parish Councillors met with Councillor Monk and his team, including Susan Priest at the Civic Centre, Folkestone, where a vote was taken to show support for the proposed Otterpool Park development. A show of hands was requested; Not one hand was raised from those 27 Parish Councillors.

Our message to Parishioners across East Kent is to lobby your Parish Council/Meeting and ask if they have garnered opinion from their residents and offered a Position Statement. Moreover, you are at liberty to ask for the detail or minutes taken at any meeting between your Parish Council/Meeting and representatives of Shepway District Council.

One of the criteria of taking this New Town development forward is that it has the support of local residents. To date, we have yet to see any evidence of majority support to urbanise this rural area, irrespective of what Councillors Carey and Hollingsbee tell us.

Lastly, many thanks to all our residents who continually contact and support us with useful information to post on our website.


Friday, 28 October 2016


We've all heard the saying 'Thinking on your feet'. Well, for anyone who attended the Council meeting at the Civic Centre last Wednesday evening (26.10.16) expecting to hear Council leader, David Monk articulate his response to supplementary questions from 2 members of the public and a handful of Councillors, we can now be in no doubt that that attribute has most definitely passed him by.

It was David Plumstead that asked the question pertaining to the purchase of the land owned by J. Champney for some £5,000,000 by Shepway District Council for the purpose of income streaming from tenanted farmers, later to be announced that a New Town within our rural communities was proposed:

Question to the Leader, Councillor David Monk. 

On 13th January 2016 report A/15/20 was presented to Council in which the Councillors were advised of the Chief Executive's use of urgent powers to purchase farmland for the sum of approximately £5 million within the area now referred to as Otterpool Park.  In exercising his urgent powers to make a bid to purchase the land, the Chief Executive consulted with the Leader and Chairman of the Council, and also noted that the Monitoring Officer had consulted with the Chairman of the Scrutiny Committee.  
Can the Leader please advise this meeting of the exact dates when the following sequence of actions took place and whether the Chairman of the Scrutiny Committee gave his consent as required by the Constitution:
Date of consultation with the Leader
Date of consultation with the Chairman of Council
Date of consultation with the Chairman of the Scrutiny Committee
Date consent given by Chairman of the Scrutiny Committee for the decision to be taken as a matter of urgency
Date of submission of the bid to purchase the land.

Having seen the question beforehand, Councillor Monk responded, as we knew he would, from a prepared script, offering little in the way of a comprehensive answer.
David Plumstead was then given the opportunity to pose a supplementary question, (unseen by Councillor Monk) which Councillor Monk struggled to answer at all, asking for guidance from the SDC Solicitor in attendance.

The question posed:

Can the Leader please state whether, and if so why, he condones the Chief Executive's use of special urgency powers when he has failed to apply them correctly, in respect of the following points: 
Why was approval not sought prior to 20th November to enable a £5 million offer to made when the land was advertised on the open market at the end of September 2015. 
Is the Leader aware of the requirement laid down in the Council's Constitution Part 4 clause 4.2, that consent is required from the Chairman of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee for the Chief Executive to take an urgent decision under those rules?  Where is the evidence of that consent and will he agree to provide me with a copy?

After a torrent of what only could be described as babbling, Councillor Monk finally blurted that he would get that information and send it on. We'll see if Councillor Monk is true to his word. We'll keep you all posted.

Councillor Mary Lawes then posed a question relating to a lack of locally built, affordable homes in addition to the removal of open spaces in the district. It was spelled out to Councillor Monk that this moral obligation was not being met.

Mary Lawes' second question was put fairly and squarely to Councillor Monk asking: 
Does the leader believe in raising fairness, justice and equality for all, if so, what plan has he got in place to achieve this in the District? If not, why not.

The rumblings from the public gallery told the story. Councillor Monk, once again, read from a script, obfuscated and was dismissive to the point of arrogance.

A further point was raised by Mary Lawes about costings differences between the building of a leisure centre at Nickolls quarry and Princes Parade. Councillor Monk agreed eight months ago to provide costings but to date no such information has been forthcoming. Mary Lawes' concluded by telling Councillor Monk: 'It is obvious that you are not a man of your word'.

The public gallery was also filled with Labour voters who turned up to voice their disgust at the defection of Councillor Claire Jeffrey to the majority Conservative SDC. Shouts of Judas, traitor and resign filled the Civic Centre whilst Ms Jeffrey took her place among the ranks of Conservative Councillors, but this is a story for others to comment on. 
We only mention it because those Labour voters now have a taste of what it's like to be totally disenfranchised with no representation, as are the residents of Stanford, Sellindge, Monks Horton, Lympne, Brabourne and other outlying villages in relation to the proposed Lorry Park and SDC's Otterpool New Town.

So, it appears that it's not only Leaders, CEO's, Councillors and MP's of a certain political persuasion or colour who are rotten to the core, it's now manifesting itself into other shades of the political establishments.

Would it be too much to ask that this contagion be arrested here and now, or is it too late?


Tuesday, 25 October 2016



Survey highlights public anger over government's Kent lorry park scheme 

A survey about the government's £250 million scheme to build a 250 acre lorry park in Kent shows huge public anger and opposition to the development. 

90 per cent of respondents to a survey carried out by the SOS Kent campaign group declared themselves opposed to the multi-million pound scheme. Volunteers from the campaign captured the views of more than 80 per cent of those attending eight public exhibitions held in East Kent to present information about the development. SOS Kent opposes plans by the government and Highways England to build the lorry park just off the M20 at Stanford. The campaign group is calling for smarter options to resolve traffic problems caused by cross-Channel disruption and rejects the authorities' claims the lorry park will solve Operation Stack. 

Responses to the survey showed a whopping 73 per cent of people voted against the lorry park proposal during the initial consultation carried out in January this year. A further 16 per cent said they were unaware that the consultation had even taken place. Only 15 people stated that they had voted in support of the scheme, raising questions about Highways England's claim that the proposal had broad public support. 

In a damning indictment of the public body's handling of the proposed development, only 10 per cent of those surveyed said they felt fully informed about the scheme and its possible impact on the local area. A further 71 per cent said they didn't feel that they had been given enough opportunities to make their voices heard or that their views had been taken on board during the consultation period. 

Many respondents stated in the survey that they believe the scheme is being rushed through and will not provide a solution for Operation Stack, with fears the lorry park will lay empty most of the time. Matthew Webb, chair of Stanford Parish Council and a spokesman for SOS Kent, said: "The results of our survey are clear – there is huge public opposition to the government's proposed lorry park both in the villages affected and in neighbouring towns like Dover and Folkestone. Yet local cllrs and MPs have ignored the views of their constituents and given very vocal support for the scheme. This whole process has been incredibly undemocratic and local people are worried that they haven't been given an opportunity to make their voices heard. 

"The survey backs up the conversations I've been having with residents and businesses in this area: the people of Kent see this scheme as a massive waste of public money that is a disastrous knee-jerk reaction to the exceptional events we saw last year, with Operation Stack in place for 32 days. This government is presenting us with a done deal – a development that will concrete over 250 acres of Kent countryside to create a huge lorry park that will sit empty. We're determined to fight their attempt to impose this scheme on us and we've already taken the first steps to start a full judicial review of the scheme." 

SOS Kent has already raised more than £15,000 towards the cost of the legal action through donations from the community and sales of a CD featuring their campaign song, a cover of Joni Mitchell's Big Yellow Taxi, sung by Kent's up-and-coming jazz and soul songstress Emilee Boyce.

Saturday, 22 October 2016


For all of us who have tried repeatedly to contact Shepway Council Leader, David Monk and failed to get a reply, this is a chance to see what Mr. Monk is made of when questioned by four Shepway residents at a full Council meeting.

We know that Councillor Monk is the master of the great untruth as we have evidence to justify that claim. We will be taking steps to counter inaccurate statements made by Councillor Monk on BBC radio in the very near future pertaining to the proposed 12,000 housing estate development that Councillor Monk is calling Otterpool Town.

In the meantime, we would urge you all to attend the full council meeting at the Civic Centre, Folkestone on Wednesday, 26th October, 2016 to fill the public gallery thereby supporting Sue Hannah, Nick Southgate, David Plumstead and Matthew Norwell. Please be there by 6.45pm for a 7pm start. Local Press will be in attendance.

If you need more details, please email us at

Questions from the public 

There are 4 questions from the public:

QUESTION 1 From Sue Hannah to Councillor David Monk, Leader of the Council Would the Council agree that six weeks is an insufficient period of time on which to consult on detailed plans for the proposed lorry park at Stanford? The plans include a 269 environmental assessment and have been released during the summer holidays. Does Council agree that this goes against the spirit and against the letter of the Government's consultation principles? Will the Council be taking this up with the Department for Transport and the Cabinet Office? 

QUESTION 2 From Nick Southgate to Councillor David Monk, Leader of the Council Given the change in national Tory policy away from an austerity agenda can you highlight who has been hardest hit by this policy of austerity and what moves you will be making to ameliorate its consequences? 

QUESTION 3 From David Plumstead to Councillor David Monk, Leader of the Council On 13th January 2016 report A/15/20 was presented to Council in which the Councillors were advised of the Chief Executive's use of urgent powers to purchase farmland for the sum of approximately £5 million within the area now referred to as Otterpool Park. In exercising his urgent powers to make a bid to purchase the land, the Chief Executive consulted with the Leader and Chairman of the Council, and also noted that the Monitoring Officer had consulted with the Chairman of the Scrutiny Committee. Can the Leader please advise this meeting of the exact dates when the following sequence of actions took place and whether the Chairman of the Scrutiny Committee gave his consent as required by the Constitution: 1. Date of consultation with the Leader 2. Date of consultation with the Chairman of Council 3. Date of consultation with the Chairman of the Scrutiny Committee 4. Date consent given by Chairman of the Scrutiny Committee for the decision to be taken as a matter of urgency Page 2 Council - 26 October 2016 3 5. Date of submission of the bid to purchase the land. 

QUESTION 4 From Matthew Norwell to Councillor David Monk, Leader of the Council Why is the Council – after repeated requests – refusing to make public the legal advice which confirmed to them that the Highways Act 1980 provides sufficient grounds to permit the construction of the proposed lorry park at Stanford? There is a clear public interest in explicitly demonstrating to local residents – and Council Tax payers – that the Council has rigorously challenged Highways England's approach to such a significant construction project. The Council has concluded the legal permission required by Highways England to build a 250 acre lorry park at a cost of £250m is less onerous than the permission needed to build a conservatory or put up a satellite dish. Shepway District Council needs to publicly explain how they have come to that conclusion

Friday, 14 October 2016


Here is message from a local resident who has taken the time to look at the lengthy Shepway report and briefly comment to us for all to see.
Secondly, this is also a message to our Councillors and MP who proudly tell us that support for the proposed lorry park is running at 55%. We think that's untrue.

Here at Sellindge & District Residents Association, we have never received one email in support of the proposed lorry park, but countless emails from desperate residents voicing their concerns, predominately on the environmental impact of the Highways England scheme.

This is what our resident has to say:

As a Stanford resident, it was with ironic mirth that I skimmed through the above 444 page report.

The hypocrisy displayed in the report when then applied to the proposed Lorry park is monumental!
Without going into detail, 2 specific points caught my eye:
On page 360, there is a lot of talk about full health impact assessments on large builds; Policy HW2. So, where is the one for the Lorry park? Surely not the work of fantasy that Highways England produced?

Secondly, Shepway District Council have the temerity to quote the governments white paper on "Healthy People; Healthy Lives", which states "create healthy living places to grow up and grow old". Next to a Lorry park spewing out deadly particulates? I think not!

So, Shepway Council release their own policy to protect the environment, build with sustainability and particular emphasis on protecting our rural areas and wildlife, but they want to build a Lorry park on area of special scientific interest, which has massive biodiversity and rare species.
Will you find a more hypocritical approach to anything in this area? Almost certainly Yes, whenever it suits the hypocrites that have the bare faced audacity to call themselves representatives of the people; I.e. The Shepway District councillors!

Feel free to share the above with anyone and everyone and encourage them to respond to the report, in whatever way the feel appropriate.


Sunday, 9 October 2016


It hadn't escaped our notice that our MP, Damian Collins is grateful to the electorate of the Shepway area for their support as confirmed by the message from the great man himself below. What he should have been saying was: 

'Thanks for the continued support, riding in on the back of Michael Howard, but I'm only passing through on my way to the top, seeking a cabinet position on HM Government. My interests and agenda is not one that I will share with you as I tread the path of my political career'. I will tell you now that I am prepared to be subservient to the incumbent Prime Minister to reach my political goal to the detriment of local Parishioners. 

A few of our local residents have contacted us and asked us to counter the official statement of dear Damian above, so on this occasion we are 'laughing in the face of adversity' and momentarily sharing this image and text with you all. We hope you all agree that the famous Musketeer quote (with the additional N) sums up Damian, so to speak, In a nutshell.



Wednesday, 5 October 2016



Next Protest/October 19th Cabinet Meeting

Shepway District Council's cabinet is due to discuss the detail of the planning application (note: but not decide the application)  on Wednesday 19th October 5pm.

We will need as many people as possible people to attend that meeting and also to protest outside the Civic Centre before the meeting – gather at 4.30. Please bring banners and be prepared to make a lot of noise!

There is limited space in the public gallery in the council chamber but we will try to film the proceedings. It is unlikely you will be allowed to take your banners into the council chamber and we will need to be quiet during the meeting itself. Unfortunately there is no opportunity for members of the public to ask questions at cabinet meetings but feel free to email cabinet members in advance.

The agenda papers won't be published until a week before the meeting but we will post the link here.


Dear Residents,

Set out below is the copy of a letter recently sent to Theresa May. from David Plumstead. We would ask you all to write in the same vein but please IN YOUR OWN WORDS, sending a hard copy, recorded post.

The Rt Hon Theresa May MP,
Prime Minister
10 Downing Street

Dear Prime Minister,

Aware of the demands on your time I am sorry to press you, but yours is the desk on which the buck, subject of this letter, really has to stop.

With the sole exception of the Chief Constable, letters sent by me and others and copied to you over recent months to those cc'd below have elicited no meaningful replies, in most cases no reply at all. You responded to my two most recent letters saying that you were passing my concerns to the DCLG and DEFRA. With no result. Not even an acknowledgement.

I turn to you directly in your capacity as Prime Minister and the political court of last resort and ask you again to address the failure in communication by those elected and appointed to respond to our concerns, specifically those arising from the proposals for -

1. Otterpool Park aka Otterpool Newtown and 

2. M20 Jnc 11 Lorry Park.

Details of both are well known to those cc'd below..

We no longer waste time writing to Shepway District Council as the CEO and leading Members, now known as the Gang of Six, by turns are dismissive, economical with the truth and worse, lie quite blatantly and publicly.

Our MP churns out meaningless standard replies to letters, does nothing to address our concerns and is held in embarrassingly low regard throughout. Communicating with him in any way at odds with the agenda of our District Council is futile. In an attempt to leave you in no doubt about his lack of standing here I resort to the vernacular. Damian Collins is a waste of space. 

The Representation of the People's Act in this District as in this constituency is a dead letter and in failing to respond appropriately or at all to our correspondence your ministers have let you down just a much as they have failed us.

The attached pictures taken during our most recent Demonstration March provide visual evidence of that situation. 

My reference to colleagues includes countless Men and Women of Kent who have submitted emails and letters, many by RM Recorded Delivery and thousands more who via public demonstrations and the media have expressed their complete loss of faith in government, local and central and overwhelming support for our twin campaigns.

My letter to the Chief Constable of Kent copied to you needs to be taken as seriously by you as he does. 

Prime Minister, we shall not cease in this fight to preserve our countryside, our way of life and our democracy. In the interest of us all I call on you to bang heads together and oblige your ministers to do us the courtesy of replying thoughtfully to letters and providing the service they were elected to fulfill. 

I await your reply.

Yours sincerely,

                                            David Plumstead
              Shepway Environment and Community Network

Cc  SoS Greg Clark (late DCLG)
       Mrs Louise Ellman MP
       SoS Rt Hon. Sajid Javid MP

Tuesday, 4 October 2016


Dear Residents,

The rumour mill has been working overtime for the past 10 months with all sorts of ideas coming forward about hidden agenda's for the 250 acre proposed Lorry park. One that has just resurfaced is a notion that, as well as being an area for parked lorries, it would also be a processing camp for immigrants.

It seems that residents have become aware of a representative from The Realist's Party visiting the Stanford site around early summer explaining that she works with Migrants in Dover and heard that a Centre may be built in Stanford as a processing area
Linked to this, Damian Collins and Charlie Elphicke were filmed visiting the jungle camp in Calais last month and residents are now asking 'Why'.

To our knowledge, there has been no plan or scheme put forward to validate the  claim of any such processing centre being developed.  

If, in the future, we have firm evidence to support this claim we will bring it to everyone's attention. 

Please spare a thought for the residents of Calais who are having to endure, not only the Jungle camp, but also the ineptitude of the local mayor and police. We are posting the video that some of you may have already seen but will serve as a reminder of the times that we are now living in. 

Please click on the link below.


Sunday, 2 October 2016


Dear Residents,

Our amazing supporters have helped us raise over £10,000, but we need to keep the funds coming in.To contribute to the Parish Council's bid for a JR you can make payments direct to our bank account:

Nat West Bank
Sort Code: 52-41-42
A/C No: 59193794

Or by cheque payable to, "Stanford Parish Council" to:
Mrs Dorothy Bultitude (Clerk)
Tudor Cottage, Stanford North, Kent, TN25 6DH

Donations can be anonymous or named. Please use the ref "Lorry Park JR". Any funds remaining at the end of our campaign will be returned pro rata to donors who state this at the time of donation otherwise they will be used for the good of the Parish. A breakdown of donations received and their use will be included in the Parish Accounts.

Thank you all for your continued support.

In association with S&DRA, SOS Kent and Stanford Parish Council


Dear Residents,

For those of you have just returned from outer Mongolia, here's a swift update on the Lorry Park history and 'where we are' today. You will hear the voices of Cameron, Osborne and Collins. who were instigators of this monstrous scheme together with the voices of reason, adopting a pragmatic, structured and sensitive approach to a real solution, rather than wasting £250,000,000 and destroying our countryside. They include: Matthew Webb, Chair, Stanford Parish Council, David Plumstead, Shepway Environment & Community Network and Louise Ellman, Chair, Transport Select Committee. 

The message here is that we have been disenfranchised by every representative that purports to represent us from Cameron, Collins, through to our local Councillors Hollingsbee and Carey.

Our fight is continuing, banding together as a community to see off the proposed lorry park and eventually Collins, Carey and Hollingsbee. We will be doing our level best to assist.

Please click on the link


Saturday, 1 October 2016

The land is a protected piece of open land which allows exceptional vistas of Hythe and Shorncliffe and should not be developed. The current proposals of 150 residential flats and houses on the site will change the character of Hythe forever…


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