The land which is situated in the broad boundary of the Otterpool Park Garden Village scheme (see map below), is owned by three farmers according to the Land Registry.
The Farmers are: Mr M. Owen, Mr R Price and Ms Jo Butcher. At some point these farmers will be approached to sell there land, or have it compulsory purchased. Now if they jump early, they will get a premium for their land possibly, but if compulsory purchased, the price may well be considerably less. So what does the farmer do?
It is only a matter of time before the farmers are approached by SDC. When this happens they will be asked to sign a secrecy agreement/gagging order; of that there is no doubt. It may well have happened. We are not saying it has.
Houses in and around the area on the map above have been put up for sale. The numbers are well above the average according to the estate agents Shepwayvox has spoken to.
Anyway, a full report to Cabinet will be published on 31 May. Our internal sources at SDC are working on getting a copy out ahead of time.
This is a time line of events according to SDC (NOT SHEPWAYVOX). We have added the costs; which have all been taken from SDC’s payment to suppliers:
05.11.14 Report C/14/38 was approved by Cabinet.
Section A of report C/14/38 sets out a projected year end financial position on the General Fund for 2014/15, based on actuals to 31 July 2014. It identifies projected variances on the General Fund revenue outturn position for 2014/15 against the latest approved budget. It also recommends a virement of £100k from the in year net underspend to fund a study during the remainder of 2014/15 and 2015/16 to examine the rationale and potential scope of economic development related activities within the vicinity of Junction 11 of the M20.
2015 AECOM, at a cost of £17,800 according to SDC’s payment to suppliers, were commissioned to explore the potential for development, at different scales and with different mixes of land use, on land adjacent to Junction 11 of the M20. The study was intended to assist Shepway District Council (SDC) assess what might constitute appropriate development at this location. The work was supported by an Interim
Utilities Statement and employment market review.
This work was useful in terms of facilitating some initial thinking regarding the key issues related to strategic housing and employment growth at this location and led to the commissioning of more detailed work, co-ordinated by ATLAS, that allowed the growth potential of the area to be explored in more detail (cost according to payment to suppliers £3714). Meetings were held with Town & Parish Councils to explore some of the concerns and issues raised.
Feb 2015 BBP Regeneration (at a cost of £3080.40 according to the payment of suppliers) were commissioned to undertake a review of small workspace provision in Shepway to identify if there were gaps in supply by both type of space and location across the district. This work identified a gap between the existing stock and latent demand for small workspace in Shepway and identified a number of suitable locations with potential to meet this need including an out-of-town location with good connectivity at the Junction 11.
April 2015 The Shepway Economic Development Strategy 2015 – 2020 was published. This includes (page 7) section 3.6 ‘identifying and bring forward appropriate sites for commercial development’ and the need to explore opportunities for identifying new employment sites in and around the three M20 junctions.
Also one of the priorities in the action plan was:- ‘Commission master planning and a feasibility study to assess the employment potential at M20 J11 working with landowners and KCC to shape proposals for a lorry park. ‘
Then with operation stack in place for around 32 days, the Government
asked Highways England to look at options for a Lorry Park in and around
20/10/15 Bids for the Otterpool Lane Land opened.
20.11.15 Hobbs Parker and Elgars jointly marketed Otterpool Manor Farm, Sellindge. Bids for the land had to be submitted to them by the 20.11.15. (Costs appear not be in SDC’s payment to suppliers)
24.11.15 Hobbs Parker sent on the 24.11.15 the memorandum of sale
confirming that the council’s bid had been successful.
17.12.15 Simultaneous exchange and completion took place on the land. The land owned by Shepway District Council within the area of search is being let on farm business tenancies and will remain so until such time as any decisions are made regarding the future use of the land.
16.03.16 The Government invited local authorities to identify areas
for new garden settlements to increase the overall number of homes being
06.05.16 The Leader of the Council announced the council’s intention to bid for a garden town in the area surrounding Otterpool Manor Farm. The process of creating the ‘garden town’ will be an open process with public consultation and the development of Otterpool Park will take many years, probably 25-30 years from now. Not all the land is owned by SDC yet.