Compulsory purchase

There have been suggestions from a number of people that Swale Borough Council should invoke Compulsory Purchase Orders for Standard Quay and other sensitive waterfront sites along the creek – and suggestions from others that this is a ridiculous idea which Swale would not dream of considering in the current economic climate.

Is it really so ridiculous?

These are small sites. Swale has sizeable reserves. And councillors who recently awarded themselves a generous pay rise are clearly not too anxious about the borough’s finances.

Instead of viewing the CPO suggestion negatively as a drain on resources, there is a strong case for seeing it as an investment in the future of Faversham – or, at the very least, an insurance policy against the cost to Swale of expensive planning battles in the future. We’re told that a Neighbourhood Plan will protect us from that sort of thing, but that won’t be in place for another year – and anyway, isn’t this what the 2008 Local Plan was supposed to do? If that plan can be so easily overruled, then why should we have any confidence in this one? Who’s to say it won’t be swept away in its turn, in the next raft of planning legislation?

Any thoughts?

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5 thoughts on “Compulsory purchase

  1. The Quay

    Thanet councillors are successfully using CPO to save Dreamland from developers. A judge just threw out the developers’ appeal. If they can do it, Swale can employ CPO to save Standard Quay, a site of greater historic significance. If the current crop of councillors are unwilling for whatever reason, it’s up to us to exercise our democratic responsibility by voting in some new ones in 2015.

    Reply
  2. Richard Matthewman

    I believe that the CPO route should be seen as a definite option amongst others for the ‘boat building and maintenance’ sites of Faversham Creek. We should be bullish about this. On Saturday in Faversham Market it was commented to me by a veritable stalwart of Creek support that in 10 or 20 years time Iron wharf would be a housing estate. I feel that our current efforts should aim to gain a long-term rekindling of boat building and maintenance activities along Faversham Creek, from the Basin to Iron Wharf. At the moment this idea is a struggle in people’s minds, partly because we do not believe that it will ever come about. But we must… The CPO route would achieve the security of the key quay sites for once and for all, so that attention could be focused on their development for boat building, further fundraising and consolidation of the Creek and its amenities. If not CPO, then by raising the money from say lottery grants, wealthy benefactors, ? …. It has been done for church roofs the country over, so let’s aim high…

    Reply
  3. Mike Cosgrove

    CPOs are certainly again something that might be considered.probably each site around the creek from Iron Wharf, Oyster House, onwards would sell for at least £1 million plus the costs of the legal process. CPos are easier when both owner and buyer agree that purchase is in the public interest, for example a road extension. Historic sites such as churches, ancient monuments etc have also been CPOd.
    But if owners dont agree to be party, the process becomes much more difficult and protracted and the test of public interest would need to be much stronger. It would be interesting to see some examples of this and how the public interest test has been applied.

    Reply
  4. Jeremy Taunton

    As you infer, Swale B.C. isn’t the poorest of councils, and it would generate an enormous amount of goodwill in the town, as well as ensuring a more stable future for the Creek. Who wants to see yet another off-the-peg restaurant/curio shop/whatever? They are three a penny, but the shipwrights are a threatened breed. I am aware that the developers couldn’t care less about them, but that only highlights the narrow-minded attitude that the developers have – their only love is a healthy balance sheet.

    Reply
  5. eric glynn

    … in his planning report on the restaurant proposal Graham Thomas supported it saying that ship maintenance at Standard Quay WOULD be safeguarded (my caps) in line with the 2008 Swale overall plan ????????????

    Reply

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