Housing development at former St Saviour’s Hospital site in Hythe, in doubt
Detail, detail detail, the devil is in the detail. From the evidence publicly available it would appear for the former St Saviour Hospital reserved matters planning application, detail has been forgotten.
The site sandwiched between the Seabrook Rd, and Cliff Rd in Hythe (Kent), is owned by Classic Hospitals Property Ltd, who are ultimately owned by the Spire Healthcare Group Plc. Classic Hospitals purchased the site on the 15 Sept 2005, for £7,359,800, according to the land registry. By Sept 2015, the site closed down as it was deemed too expensive to modernize
Within a year of closure a year a planning application for 47 new one, two and three-bedroom apartments on the land rising north of the A259 was submitted under application Y16/0794/SH. This was approved on 22 Nov 2019, and the first condition was that work on the Dutch House element would be started within 3 years of this date.
That aside we note condition 19 restricts ANY works, including vegetation clearance, until a detailed reptile mitigation report / strategy is approved.
This appears to have been submitted in 22/1431/FH/CON. We note KCCs ecological advice for Condition 19, as of the 10 Nov 2022 and uploaded to the Council planning portal on the 14 Nov 2022, states:
We advise that insufficient information has been provided to discharge the condition (19)
No reptile survey has been carried out which would have enabled us to consider if the reptile population (if present) within the site could be supported by a receptor site of that size.
We advise that the additional information submitted to address the above point is not sufficient to satisfy us why the proposed approach is appropriate.
We advise that information addressing the above concerns must be submitted prior to the discharge of the condition.
A fortnight later on the 24 Nov 2022, two days after planning permission would appear to have expired, KCC Ecological advice states:
We highlight that due to the time of year the reptile mitigation can not commence until March/April when the weather will reach temperatures of at least 9 degrees to ensure that any reptiles present are active.
meaning condition 19 would not be meet until Mar/Apr 2023, some five months after planning permission had expired.
As of today, 29 Dec 2022, condition 19 has NOT been signed off, and work as we understand it has not commenced.
Another strange thing about 22/1431/FH/CON, is the latest decision date is prior to the earliest decision date that can be made by the planning department. It should be the other way around.
This would appear to be a fault with the Enforcement Dept.