TALK at the FLEUR Thursday 21st

TALKS ON SPRING EVENINGS AT THE FLEUR

THE STORY OF FAVERSHAM CREEK  IN TEN OBJECTS

BY DR PAT REID

THURSDAY 21 MAY 2015 at 7 for 7.30 pm
The Fleur Hall, Gatefield Lane

Faversham has a very long and fascinating history. This is a special year for our town, with the Magna Carta 800 celebrations.

Our history stretches back centuries before the Magna Carta, as well as centuries after it. Our town was first settled around the Creek, and our maritime heritage is still a significant influence on the whole town.

Join us for a swift journey through time, as Dr Pat Reid shows us ten objects which tell something important about the story of Faversham Creek.

Whilst Admission is free – and Refreshments are available, we rely on donations to cover the cost of the hall and refreshments. as well as raise some funds for the Trust.

At present, as you may know, we are raising funds for the balance of the outstanding capital required to ensure that the replacement Bridge will be an OPENING BRIDGE.

“Swing the Bridge” At The India Royal

CORRECT CONTACT NUMBER IS 01795 227706

Come and join us for a curry at the India Royal,16 East Street Faversham and raise money for “Swing the Bridge”

Image (41)Image (42)

Basin Dredging Licence Application Public Consultation

The application to the Marine Management Organisation for the licence to dredge the Basin, is now out for public consultation. There are links below to the main documents; the details of the application and two supporting documents written by our consultants, after lengthy discussion with the Environment Agency, supporting the application.

A file of these documents is lodged in the Faversham Library

Marine Licence Application for Faversham Creek Basin

Water Framework Directive compliance

Ecological Technical Note

If you wish to comment on this application, you can write or email to;

Kevin Marley BSc (Hons), Licensing Case Officer, Marine Licensing Team

Her Majesty’s Government – Marine Management Organisation

Lancaster House, Hampshire Court, Newcastle Upon Tyne, NE4 7YH

Kevin.Marley@marinemanagement.org.uk

Tel: 0191 3762697, Fax: 0191 376 2681

The Royal Yachting Association is a consultee to the MMO and circulates all the local marine organisations and clubs, and has already received supporting correspondence from the Medway Swale Boating Association.

If anyone has any queries or would like further information, please write to us using CONTACT US at the top of the page.

If you support the plans, then please do tell the MMO.

GARDEN PLANTS & ORNAMENTS SALE

GARDEN PLANTS & ORNAMENTS
Come along and take a look at the variety of plants for sale and support Faversham “Swing the Bridge” Appeal as well!
Saturday 2nd May – 92 Abbey Street , Faversham – 10am-2.30pm
We look forward to seeing you!
Photo’s: Griselda Mussett.G's begonias G's plants

Swing the Bridge Fund Poster and Gift Form

Swing the Bridge PosterIf you want to help, Download this poster here, and print and display;

Swing the Bridge Poster;  Swing the Bridge Poster

Also the Donation and Gift form;

Swing the Bridge Gift form;  Swing the Bridge Gift form

“Swing the Bridge” Community Fundraising Launched

The community fundraising “Swing the Bridge” Appeal was formally launched at an event on Monday evening at The Old Wine Vaults Faversham. £125,000 must be raised by 1st October 2015 to build a swing bridge which will allow the regeneration of the Creek basin. Members of the Faversham Creek Trust, the Faversham Society and the Brents Community Association came together to show their commitment to raising this target.

Mark Dance, KCC Cabinet Member for Economic Development said “It has been a great pleasure to be Chairman of the Faversham Swing Bridge Committee, and I have witnessed full support from everyone who sits around the table and will continue to drive this project forward.

However, what I have witnessed tonight is nothing short of amazing. This is about the organisations, the individuals and ex-bargemen and traditional boating folk.

The group I met tonight have assured me of their full support in raising the gap of £125,000 to make this project happen.

I have told everyone in the room ‘we’re gonna build a bridge’”

 

Chris Wright, Chairman of the Faversham Creek Trust said “It was an enormous pleasure to see the three groups – the Brents Community Association, the Faversham Society, and the Creek Trust – affirming their commitment to work together to achieve the funding target of £125,000 to build the swing bridge. We value the support of the Kent County Council to achieve the aim of bringing the Creek back to life. We are all confident of success.”

Hilary Whelan, secretary of the Brents Community Association, said: “For people in the Brents and North Preston, the bridge and the area around it are an important part of our environment, our everyday lives. The Creek is a huge potential asset for our area, if only we can bring it back to life, with boats in the basin – we want barges and traditional boats, but we also want dinghies and rowing boats and other small craft, and things to do for all kinds of people of all ages. For that we need a better bridge, a working bridge, and this is why we’re happy to work in partnership with the Faversham Society and the Creek Trust in this big community fundraising effort.”

Mike Frohnsdorff, Chairman of the Faversham Society said “We pledge the support of the Faversham Society’s 1100 members and of the shop and Heritage Centre in Preston Street towards achieving the targeted total for the Bridge Fund. The co- operation of the three organisations augurs well for the future of Faversham and the preservation of its heritage and environment”.

English Heritage’s Modifications to Creek Plan

FAVERSHAM TOWN COUNCIL TO DISCUSS
REVISED NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN
TUESDAY 7 APRIL 2015 AT 7 PM IN THE GUILDHALL

The Faversham Creek Neighbourhood Plan has been revised by Swale Borough Council, to take into account concerns raised by English Heritage. Although these are being reported as ‘minor’ modifications, the revisions are contained in a 12 page document, and they affect 33 pages of the Plan. They can be read here http://tinyurl.com/pnml6xl , and they make very interesting reading. Some of the main points are summarised at the end of this email.

The agenda for Faversham Town Council’s meeting on Tuesday, 7 April (7 pm in the Guildhall) – you can find it here http://tinyurl.com/nehuwt5 – includes item number 9, “To receive and approve the recommendations of the Town Clerk’s Report (copy enclosed).

Item Number 8 of the Town Clerk’s Report (page 11 of the above document) reads as follows:

“FAVERSHAM CREEK NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN: ENGLISH HERITAGE

Following discussions with English Heritage, the attached paper indicates minor amendments that can be accepted to the draft Neighbourhood Plan. The purpose of the attached is to reassure the Independent Examiner that English Heritage’s views, although submitted after the general consultation closed, have been considered and, where appropriate, taken into account. The Town Council, Swale Borough Council and the independent planning consultant, Richard Eastham have been in discussion with English Heritage and believe that the Plan, with those amendments, meets the basic conditions as required by independent examination as well as meeting English Heritage’s concerns. Are Members content for this to be presented as the Town Council’s final amendments to the Plan following the consultation as led by Swale Borough Council?”

We think it is very important for the people of Faversham to be involved in such  crucial decisions. If you are interested to hear what the Council are discussing, please come to this meeting on Tuesday evening. It is your last opportunity to question your Councillors before the Neighbourhood Plan goes to the Independent Examiner. Please arrive early – the doors may be closed to late comers.

WHY ARE WE NOT BEING TOLD?

Many people would expect something as important to the residents of Faversham as the Neighbourhood Plan to be shown as a specific item on the agenda for a meeting, and to have a proper discussion held about the amendments. Many would agree that the proposed amendments are not minor.

English Heritage has no record of having been consulted at the proper time (Regulation 14 stage, which took place in May and June 2014), which is why they submitted their document during the Regulation 16 stage (November and December 2014). The introduction to the document, or ‘Statement of Common Ground and Schedule of Minor Modifications 28.03.15’ recognises this fact (paragraphs 3 and 4).

WHAT DOES THE DOCUMENT SAY?

Evidence Base

On page 3 of this document, in the first major paragraph, it is stated that:

‘All sites allocated for development have been assessed initially through the Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment 2011 conducted by Swale Borough Council, and in the Strategic Environmental Assessment (date) prepared for the plan by Swale Borough Council.’

FCT responded to the SHLAA 2011-12, requesting that all sites within the Faversham Creek Neighbourhood Plan area should be excluded from the SHLAA pending the Plan. The response that was given to every site was:

“The purpose of the SHLAA is to assess potential housing sites. It forms part of the evidence base which will be taken into account when preparing the Neighbourhood Plan (which will balance all interests and cumulative impacts)”

In the SHLAA 2012-13, in the site specific sections, the Neighbourhood Plan is referred to as ‘advocating employment-led regeneration.’

It is questionable whether the Neighbourhood Plan did balance all interests and cumulative impacts. It is questionable whether the Neighbourhood Plan does ‘advocate employment-led regeneration’.

A search of Swale’s website for the Strategic Environmental Assessment yields nothing. The fact that no date is given for it in this ‘Schedule of Minor Modifications’ may be indicative of its existence.

Members of the Steering Group and other interested parties have repeatedly requested this document, which should have been prepared at an early stage of the planning process, but it had not been written. They still have not received a copy. It could not have been used to assess the sites allocated for development, as at that time it did not exist, and at this time it is not in the public domain. This document should, legally, have been written at a much earlier stage, and should have been available to the Steering Group and the public before the Plan was written.

Summary of Changes

The amendments do make a very considerable difference to the Plan, especially to Ordnance Wharf and Swan Quay, and to matters concerning the conservation area, the archaeology and historical aspects of the sites, the views and design standards. Specific sites which are affected directly (although all are covered by the ‘Background Text and Scene Setting’ and the ‘Creek-Wide Policies’) are Site 2 Ordnance Wharf, Site 3 BMM Weston, Sites 4 and 5 Swan Quay / Frank and Whittome, Site 8 Standard Quay and Site 9 Standard House.

Notes on Policy Changes

The policies for Ordnance Wharf would make it considerably more difficult to build residential units on it, but still would not preclude them.

The policies for Swan Quay would make it more difficult for the proposed large blocks of flats to be built by the Quayside, but would allow some housing. They offer much more protection to the existing industrial buildings, the industrial nature of the site, and to the environment of the historic and listed buildings on and close to the site, but it may not be enough.

The policies for Standard Quay remove the use of Building No. 1 as a restaurant.

The policies for Standard House offer greater protection to its setting as a significant landmark on the Creek.

In summary, then, these changes do offer some, but not all, of what Faversham Creek Trust and others have been asking for all these years. However, they should be properly debated by a full Council Meeting in public, as a specific agenda item – they are too important to be subsumed into a vote on the Town Clerk’s words:

“Are Members content for this to be presented as the Town Council’s final amendments to the Plan following the consultation as led by Swale Borough Council?”

If you wish to show your interest and concern about these items, please come to this meeting next Tuesday, 7 April, at 7 pm in the Guildhall, if you possibly can.