Plans to progress Otterpool Park to a revised planning application has been underway for quite some time.
As revealed by the bloggers at slurry.org.uk last month, Westenhanger Castle – which cost £2.9m, is not in the Otterpool Park Planning red line boundary. The red line will be changed to include the Castle within the Otterpool Park Application.
The Council owned company, Otterpool Park LLP, who is the new applicant for the Otterpool Park planning application, and the Local Planning Authority – Folkestone & Hythe District Council – are currently working towards amendments to the application, so as to bring Westenhanger Castle, which sites in a floodplain, inside the red line boundary.
The Otterpool Park Phase 1 masterplan has been presented to and discussed by the Places Panel, whose role is to provide independent and impartial advice to the Council at key stages of the planning process for Otterpool Park.
We understand the Phase 1 masterplan is due to come before the Otterpool Park LLP Board and shareholders (the Council) on the 24th February. We and others strongly suspect the LLP are getting close to a final layout.
John Bunnett who heads up Otterpool Park LLP admits the outline planning permission (Y19/0257/ FH) will need a lot of re-working after the Planning Inspector’s Core Strategy report, which is hoped for by summer. This will trigger a fresh round of consultation regarding Otterpool at that stage.
As we are talking Otterpool, it has been brought to our attention that Quinn Estates have a strong interest in a piece of land just outside the Otterpool Park planning application red boundary.
The land is currently owned by Charles Filmer (above left) and John Damian Aspinall as Trustees of The Aspinall Foundation, who purchased it via a mortgage on 20.06.2018, according to the Land Registry. Filmer, who is a lawyer, is close to the former racecourse owners – The Reuben Brothers
Possible self builds
As we understand, Quinn Estates would like to purchase the land, restore and preserve the WW2 Huts and other heritage items on the land, and offer it for self builds. With the Aspinall casinos closed and both the wildlife parks as well, income for the Aspinall Foundation is no doubt down significantly. They might well consider selling if the price is right.
Staying with Quinn Estates, they are planning a reserved matters application for the Bucknell land in Sellindge, where they wish to build circa 162 homes. We wrote about this site in Sellindge in April 2018. We understand the application will be submitted very soon.
Staying in Sellindge, Alan Down lives at Elm Tree Farm which sits between Sellindge Primary School and Moorstock lane – see red line boundary below.
According to the land registry, Mr Down has a land option for Elm Tree Farm, Sellindge, with Folkestone Development Company Ltd, to develop the land.
However, in the 2020 Core Strategy documents, a document titled: Landscape & Visual Briefing Note Project: Land at Elm Tree Farm, Sellindge (7195) it states:
It is understood that Quinn Estates are requiring initial input to support the principle of development and promotion for its site c.17.84 hectare (44 acres) on Land at Elm Tree Farm, Sellindge, for residential development, through the Folkstone and Hythe Local Plan Review.
It is not clear who Mr Down has a land option with. It could be Folkestone Development Company based at Dovecourt Barn, Stowting, or it could be Quinn Estates who wishes to put circa 188 dwellings on Elm Tree Farm.
A spokesperson for Quinn Estates has confirmed they are promoting for the land owner, Mr Alan Down of Elm Tree Farm Sellindge. They make it clear they are not working with Folkestone Development Company. In fact a spokesperson for Quinn Estates did not even seem to be aware of the Land Registry document, or that Folkestone Development Company Ltd have a option to develop, according to the land registry document.
Makes you wonder who does Quinn Estates due diligence.
Moving on, Otterpool Park will start at Newingreen, one will drive along the A20, through nothing but houses from there to St Mary’s the Virgin Church in Sellindge, a distance of nearly 3 miles.
That said, one can drive from New Romney to Folkestone, a distance of 13.5 miles and see houses lining the route nearly the whole way.
The Shepway Vox Team
Dissent is NOT a Crime