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Objections to Ordnance Wharf
The Faversham Society Board has not yet determined its view of the proposed development on Ordnance Wharf. However, many are already objecting and talking about the proposed development. This is merely a list of reasons people are giving for objecting.
This image of the Priory taken 18th July from the public footpath on Morrison's Quay reveals that the proposed development would block this iconic view with a permanent obstruction. The trees currently block some of the view but a) they are impermanent and b) seasonal. The developer has not provided the scale contextual drawings that would normally be expected and which would reveal this impact.
There is also the question of what it will look like from Stonebridge Pond, it will tower above the trees
This photograph shows the view in winter.
The development is described as three-storey, In fact, it is four storeys with parking on the ground floor. [A storey describes any level part of a building with a floor that could be used by people (for living, work, storage, recreation, et cetera)] The Ordnance Wharf Site Specific Policies in the local plan [OW2] specifies "no new building shall be more than three storeys in height."
The developer should provide accurate scale drawings showing how the proposed development relates to the Purifier Building, the Priory and the gunpowder walls on Flood Lane.
A detailed Heritage Statement should form part of this Application since the Wharf was identified as an undesignated heritage asset under the Creek Neighbourhood Plan, and it also stands within the designated heritage asset of the Faversham Conservation Area. Works that alter it will, therefore, have an effect for better or worse on its architectural/historic character and also on the character of the Conservation Area. A Heritage Statement should be required before the application is considered.
There is limited street parking and the use of car parking spaces for dinghies should not be permitted. For properties of this value two car parking spaces per property and some visitor parking should be required.
As explained by Eldon Hinchcliffe this is an unsuitable site for a dinghy sailing club.
Vehicular access on to Brent Road/Hill will be problematic particularly so given the proposed shared use of Flood Lane for vehicles and pedestrians.
Ordnance Wharf was part of the town's gunpowder industry, the clue is in the name. The wharf lies between the two outflows from Stonebridge Pond which powered the watermills which ground gunpowder. The proposed development makes no contribution to maintaining and interpreting this important part of our heritage.
This housing development is incompatible with the development of the basin for maritime regeneration, a purpose for which a considerable public investment is imminent. A public investment which includes a significant element of public subscription for a movable bridge for creek maritime heritage and not for further unaffordable housing development.
With very large numbers of new houses being built around Faversham and more expected, 7 dwellings makes no significant contribution to meeting housing targets set by central government and will certainly not meet local housing need.
The community use elements of the proposals are for a cafe and a dinghy sailing club. Eldon Hinchcliffe's analysis suggests that the dinghy club will fail - a boathouse and slipway for use by the Faversham residents would be more appropriate and sustainable. The community use anticipated for the cafe is not specified but it is unlikely that it would attract the local community. The meeting room use is unspecified.
In March 2020, Faversham community groups working in coordination with the Environment Agency (EA) installed eel passes on the sluices that feed those two branches of Faversham Creek 20-30m upstream of Ordnance Wharf. European eels are a Critically Endangered species, the EA has identified improved passibility of sluices and other barriers to be the biggest contribution that the UK can make to eel conservation, and the Kent Nature Partnership has identified improved access to freshwater habitat for eels as one of its immediate priorities. Nothing should be done at Ordnance Wharf that has a negative impact on eel movements. That should include assessing any impact that artificial lighting from new housing on Ordnance Wharf might have on migrating elvers (which navigate by the moon).
If the development is permitted SBC needs to ensure that the public rights of way be legally protected. SBC holds legal title [K708886] over some of the land included in the development. Legal title  included a covenant guaranteeing: "A right of way at all times and for all purposes over and along " Flood Lane.
Legal title K549889 included a covenant protecting free access to the creek. If planning permission is granted then this right needs to be protected in the permission to ensure access rights for the Faversham Creek Trust at the Purifier Building and for barges once the moveable bridge is installed.
The proposed walkway on both sides of the development and the undercroft passage should be legally defined as unrestricted public rights of way.
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