Daffodils by the gateLamb with room to run.Headcorn High streetHyacinths at back doorKentish farm house in winter



WKPS is a non-political environmental pressure group, registered charity 261992.   We have three main aims:

  • To protect and enhance the character and environment of the Wealden towns, villages and countryside
  • To safeguard the amenities of the Weald of Kent
  • To cultivate a wider interest in and care for the beauty, history and character of the Weald of Kent
Please Click this link to download the
Annual Report & Accounts 2016


The Planning Committee met early September in High Halden. This bulletin contains news relating to applications dealt with and decisions handed down since the last meeting in early August, as well as proposed future action on some current applications.


WKPS comments on Ashford BC's draft plan submitted 10 August.


16/01165/AS Oast at Church Farm, Church Hill, High Halden – Conversion of oasthouse to dwelling including link, flue, landscaping and access. WKPS supported.

16/505932/FULL/MA Land rear of Chart View, off Chart Hill Road, Chart Sutton, Maidstone ME17 3EX – Change of use of land to use as a residential caravan site for 2 gypsy families each with 2 caravans, of which no more than one would be a static mobile home, together with the erection of 2 amenity buildings, laying of hardstanding and formation of new access. WKPS Objected.

16/01145/AS 3-4 Yew Tree Cottage, Grange Road, Tenterden TN30 6DS – Demolition of garage & shed and outside WC and erection of a pair of semi-detached houses with sheds (revision to permission granted under 16/00741/AS). WKPS supported previous application and supports this revision.

16/00871/AS Buss Farm, Tuesnoad Lane, Bethersden TN26 3EQCertificate of Lawful Development – Proposed mobile home located on farm land. WKPS Objected.

16/01110/AS Claypit, Bromley Green Road, Ruckinge, Ashford TN26 2EQ – Certificate of Lawful Development – Proposed use – mobile home in garden as ancillary accommodation.WKPS expressed concern.

16/00583/AS Oldbury, Brissenden Green Lane, Bethersden, Ashford TN26 3BJ – Retrospective application for alterations to existing building and use of site for business and storage purposes (within Classes B1(a), B2 and B8 of the Schedule to the Use Classes Order) with associated landscaping and ecological enhancements. WKPS objected.

16/00646/AS Cullens Farm Buildings, Maytham Road, Wittersham – Provision of 1 no. tourist accommodation cottage including change of use of land and parking. Revised proposal to 1 x 3 bed unit. WKPS objected.


16/501571/TW Beacon Farm, Rolvenden Road, Benenden TN17 4BU – Change of use of an agricultural building from B1 to a veterinary practice D1. WKPS expressed concern. APPLICATION WITHDRAWN.

15/501216/OUT/TW Land off Chequers Road, Goudhurst – Outline application for a residential development for older residents with all matters to be reserved for future consideration. WKPS objected. TWBC REFUSED.

15/509966/FULL/TW Ferrers, Sand Lane, Frittenden TN17 2BA – Replacement oak framed house and detached garage. WKPS objected. TWBC PERMITTED.

15/510395/FULL/TW Balcombes Hill, Goudhurst – Erection of C2 housing with care for the elderly, comprising of 12 x 2 bedroom apartments, 7 x 2 bedroom bungalows and 3 x 2 bedroom dwellings (revision to 14/506621/FULL). WKPS objected. TWBC REFUSED.

15/509607/FULL/TW Woodstove Trading Company, The Forge, The Common, Sissinghurst TN17 2HT – Demolition of existing buildings and erection of 2 semi-detached dwellings and one detached with garage. WKPS objected. APPLICATION WITHDRAWN.

12/01807/FULL/TW Cranden Diamonds, Cranbrook Road, Benenden TN17 4ET – Proposed new portal frame building and extension of central section of existing main building. WKPS objected May 2015 (altest revision to application). TWBC PERMITTED

16/00045/AS Land between Smarden Charter Hall and Weathercock, Pluckley Road, Smarden – Proposed outline application for up to 50 residential units with all matters reserved except for access. WKPS objected. ABC REFUSED.

16/00932/AS 19 Marshalls Land, Tenterden TN30 6EA – Erection of 3 bedroom dwelling with associated parking. WKPS objected. ABC PERMITTED.

16/01058/AS Land north of 1 Westwell Court, Tenterden – Erection of garage block with two bed flat above (revision to refused application 16/00295/AS). WKPS objected. ABC REFUSED.


Pleased to hear of the new Society Secretary appointment of Fay Merrick. We hope to meet her soon. Chair reminded the committee of the public meeting in Goudhurst on 26 October.


IMPORTANT NOTE: This paragraph deals with actions planned rather than already taken. Readers are asked to note that the opinions and action points are those expressed by the planning committee as a whole. They are not always final decisions. Many items discussed at meetings require further research before we reach a final decision on action to be taken.

16/01189/AS Land east of Badgeworthy, The Moat, Charing – Erection of two storey, 3 bedroom dwelling. (Previous application 15/00051/AS – WKPS objected, ABC REFUSED, Appeal DISMISSED. Historic part of Charing, heritage site. Archaeological concerns expressed by the appeal inspector, applicant has not addressed this issue. Further issues include: disturbing the mature trees, site is on a dangerous blind corner on a narrow road. Many objections. WKPS to object.

16/01194/AS Saracens Paddock, Pluckley Road, Pluckley TN27 0SA – Outline application for erection of a new dwelling (in the garden of existing house) Isolated area, large garden of existing bungalow, open countryside, no justification to build another house, not within the village, not an infill site. WKPS to object.

16/01262/AS Oldbury, Brissenden Lane, Bethersden TN26 3BJ – Variation of Condition 1 of application WE/9/64/111a to vary the wording of the condition to “the occupation of the dwelling shall be limited to a person employed, or last employed, locally in agriculture as defined in Section 221(1) of the Town and Country Planning Act 1962 or forestry, or in connection with Europoll Supply Ltd., or Ram Doctor Ltd., or a dependent of such person residing with him (but including a widow or widower of such a person)”. A previous application sought to change the use from agricultural to industrial occupancy. The house has been subdivided into 2 flats without permission.WKPS to comment that this application should not be decided until 16/00583/AS for the use of the site is determined and that, if this is approved and no agricultural occupancy demand exists, occupancy should be unrestricted.

16/06023/FULL/TW Beacon Farm, Rolvenden Road, Benenden TN17 4BU – Replacement of asbestos roof with steel profile sheets and insertion of glazed screen to replace steel doors. Previous application 16/501571 for Vets' Practice was withdrawn by applicant. Decrepit site. But, the reason for the upgrade of the building should be stated, and any use involving smell or noise should be excluded. Concern here is that (as has happened elsewhere) once the building is upgraded without a specific use being stated, that a further application will be made for the real intention. Noted, however, that an owner of such a property will want to renovate it and bring it into use. WKPS to object.

16/01198/AS Former Kent Highways Depot, Ashford Road, High Halden – Demolition of existing buildings, walls and hard standing; erection of 25 residential units comprising 9 x 4 bedroom, 14 x 3 bedroom and 2 x 2 bedroom units; garages, parking and associated works (amended scheme approval 12/01449/AS for 20 dwellings). Some of the parking arrangements are inappropriate and will simply cause people to park in the road. Extra 5 houses will increase traffic movements. The previous consent allowed for no affordable housing and this proposal also excludes them. We disagree with the statements presented in the developer's viability report. Overcrowding issues, only 2 of the 25 houses are 2 bed, with the rest being 3 & 4 bed homes. WKPS to object.

16/01208/AS Setts Wood Farm, Appledore Road, Tenterden TN30 7DG – Demolition of existing agricultural building and replace with holiday accommodation. Former pig sty in a derelict state. Within AONB. Access via the lanes is not an issue as Kench Hill is nearby. It will be interesting to see the outcome of this application. WKPS no comment.

16/01257/AS Westwell Downs, Pilgrims Way, Westwell, Charing – Proposed road. This is a proposed road made of chippings to access and collect logs/timber from the woods on the North Downs. The area is criss-crossed by footpaths. It may be that it is better to have a made road to protect the SSSI from the ogging/coppicing work. WKPS no comment.

16/01301/AS Buckman Green Farm, Romden Road, Smarden TN27 8QZ – Siting of 1 no. seasonal agricultural workers accommodation and out of season storage at other times of the year. Hop farm with existing 2 bed bungalow, father to handover operations to his son, and accommodation required for the son and his family. Previous application for a mobile home was refused, but PC would support a permanent home. Proposal now is for a log cabin. When anyone can convert a barn/light industrial building into a dwelling, there is no logic for a refusal of accommodation for a legitimate farmer on his land. WKPS to support.

16/01244/AS Proposed base station at Cage Wood, Hamstreet Road, Shadoxhurst – The installation of a 25 m lattice tower, 6 no. antennas, 4 no. equipment cabinets, 2 no dishes and ancillary development within a chain-linked fence compound. (RD) Tower will be visible, but there are no objections from neighbours. Mobile network signals are needed in the area. WKPS no comment.

16/01232/AS Three Oak Drive, Nickley Wood Road, Shadoxhurst TN26 1LZ – Stationing of 2 additional mobile homes (retrospective). (RD) Applicant claims to have been on site for 10 years but there is no proof of this. No objections from neighbours. WKPS to comment on proof of occupancy and of the applicants’ qualification as travellers.

16/01215/AS Kendal House, The Street, Shadoxhurst TN26 1LU – Prior approval for the change of use of ground floor from office (B1) to dwelling house (C3). (RD) This will improve this Listed building and environs by removing traffic movements from the office element. WKPS to support.

16/01250/AS 10 Millfield, High Halden TN26 3LX – Two storey front and side extensions, single storey front infill extension and detached garage. (RD) The proposal will double the size of the existing property. The works will certainly cause chaos and noise, but there are no objections from the neighbours other than the working hours of the builders. WKPS to ask for working hours on this build to be restricted and imposed.

16/00751/AS Breton Court, Grange Road, Tenterden TN30 6EE – Demolition of the west wing involving the loss of 3 bedrooms and the erection of a detached building and associated works to accommodate 24 bedrooms for use in conjunction with the existing care home. **Reconsultation following receipt of new site plan showing an amended red line boundary and completed Certificate B confirming the serving of notice”. Note TPO on 3 mature oaks served. WKPS to support but with reservations re: parking, trees, drainage.

16/01322/AS Mechanical Components Ltd., Church Farm, Bell Lane, Smarden TN27 8NT – Redevelopment of an existing commercial/industrial site to accommodate 5 no. commercial units. Run down, disused, commercial site next to Smarden Bell Pub. Previous application withdrawn because of many objections. Proposed building on same footprint as existing but mezzanine floor adding height will be imposing on surrounding property. 47 parking spaces indicates a significant development on this site. WKPS to support the upgrading of this site but not to this scale or extent. Dangerous bend, narrow lane. Restrict size of lorries and number of vehicles.


ABC Local Plan feedback: 2865 representations from 627 respondents. Concern expressed about the Housing Strategy being over-reliant on the Ashford urban area and that there should be more development in the rural villages. There is pressure from certain quarters for new builds in the countryside. The lack of a five-year land supply does not mean that any application would be approved — the same criteria apply to all applications. A review of the representatives’ comments and a review of sites will now be undertaken. It is likely that there will be a further consultation before the report to the Inspector in Spring 2017.


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