Save Kent's Green Spaces - Day of Action

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DAY OF ACTION NOVEMBER 28 2021

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IT’S TIME TO RETHINK WHERE WE BUILD HOUSES


On November 28 2021, a huge turnout and support for Save Kent’s Green Spaces Day of action showed it’s time to rethink building on valuable green spaces. Across the county, residents braved some bracing weather to come out in support of Save Kent’s Green Spaces. Events took place in all corners of Kent as more than 30 groups challenging developments in their areas held walks, gatherings and other events. Together, the groups were highlighting the scale of development Kent is facing over the coming years, which is set to destroy more than 17,000 acres of agricultural land, wildlife habitat and valuable green spaces – a figure that eclipses the area of Manhattan Island in New York, and which is being added to at an alarming rate. The sheer strength of support for Save Kent’s Green Spaces shows the county is saying “enough is enough”. We cannot continue to destroy the land we need so badly for food production and the mental wellbeing of the county’s residents. The focus of development must turn from greenfield to brownfield and urban regeneration, with the less environmentally damaging task of repurposing existing buildings, including the increasing numbers of empty commercial properties and office spaces around the county. The government needs to put the Prime Minister’s words about not building on green fields into policy. And it needs to be done now. That’s the only thing that’s going to stop this unfettered vandalism of the Garden of England.


BORDEN RESIDENTS AGAINST DEVELOPMENT

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BROADWATER ACTION GROUP

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BURHAM SAYS NO TO FURTHER DEVELOPMENT

“It’s great to see that community groups across Kent are coming together to protest against the destruction of Kent’s countryside and green spaces as a result of overinflated housing targets that are being forced on local authorities by central government. The pace and scale of development are simply not sustainable. We live in one of the driest parts of the UK. Our water supply can’t cope, let alone our sewerage system. Here in my constituency, there are plans to cover vast swathes of Grade 1 agricultural land with housing. Tranquil green valleys and nature reserves are at threat from road development. The prime minister promised in October that there would be no new development on green fields, and yet this promise rings totally hollow as the government has not implemented any change of policy to ensure that this doesn’t happen. It is absolutely critical that homes and roads are developed in genuine consultation with local communities and not imposed upon them.” Rosie Duffield, MP for Canterbury

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FRIENDS OF DUKE’S MEADOW & NEAL’S PLACE MEADOW, THE FRIENDS OF OLD PARK & CHEQUER’S WOOD AND SAVE WINCHEAP WATER MEADOWS

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SAVE CAPEL AND KEEP KENT GREEN

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CLIFFE AND CLIFFE WOODS RESIDENTS DEVELOPMENT GROUP

“I fully support Save Kent’s Green Spaces Day of Action. I have lived in Kent for 40 odd years and to see what amounts to a full-scale attack on the county and its people gives a lie to this government’s binding commitments to the UN Sustainable Development Goals of which Prime Minister David Cameron was co-chair; its own agreements under Cop26; and Boris Johnson’s promise that they “would not build on green fields”. “No one disputes the need for housing, and everyone is in sympathy for those in need. And everyone, if consulted properly, democratically and locally without threat and listened to rather than being shouted at, bullied or commanded, will help the government toward a nationally agreed plan that accommodates what is necessary, what is possible, and where growth can best be absorbed.” Sir Bob Geldof, Save Kent’s Green Spaces supporter and member of the Farms, Fields, & Fresh Air Faversham march

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KEEP THE EAST CLIFF GREEN

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ECCLES ACTION GROUP

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FARMS, FIELDS & FRESH AIR FAVERSHAM AND SAVE OUR ORCHARDS – SELLING VILLAGE

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SAVE OUR HEATH LANDS - LENHAM

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AGAINST LIDSING GARDEN DEVELOPMENT, BREDHURST WOODLAND ACTION GROUP AND SAVE CAPSTONE VALLEY

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SAVE LYNSTED

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MEOPHAM VILLAGE NOT TOWN

“Kent is reeling under crazily high housing targets that are both unsustainable and unrealistic. If our county is to retain its largely rural identity and maintain a desirable quality of life for residents, those targets need to be scaled back. “Further, local authorities should be able to reject unsuitable proposals that do nothing for local people and everything for developers without fear of their decisions being almost certainly overturned at appeal. “CPRE Kent has always been clear that some new housing must be built if the needs of its own population are to be met. However, increasingly, that is not what we are seeing – instead, there has been a focus on large, expensive properties way beyond the means of local people. That must change.” Dr Hilary Newport, CPRE Kent director

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SAVE OLD WIVES LEES FROM INDUSTRIAL SOLAR

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SAVE PRINCE’S PARADE AND WILD ABOUT PRINCE’S PARADE

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PROTECT LAND WEST OF TEYNHAM

© Ivan Marsh 2021

© Ivan Marsh 2021

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© Ivan Marsh 2021


VALLEY CONSERVATION SOCIETY (LOOSE)

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WESTGATE AND GARLINGE ACTION GROUP AGAINST HOUSING DEVELOPMENT, BIRCHINGTON ACTION GROUP AND THANET TREES

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OTHER CAMPAIGNS AND A HOST OF RESIDENTS ALSO SUPPORTED SAVE KENT’S GREEN SPACES IN AREAS INCLUDING CRANBROOK, HIGHSTED PARK, HOO, MARDEN, MILSTEAD, PADDOCK WOOD, RAMSLYE AND MORE. ALL THESE AREAS ARE UNDER THREAT OF DEVELOPMENT

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“Developers are intent of completely destroying our countryside which will be lost for ever. Villages will be merged to make a garden city destroying in the process valuable Grade 1 agricultural land, ancient woodland and wildlife. We need to grow our own food, we need to protect our ancient woodlands, our heritage our countryside – Kent is the Garden of England – let’s preserve it for future generations.”

Claire Jacobs on Highsted Park Development, Sittingbourne

RESIDENTS AGAINST RAMSLYE DEVELOPMENT

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STOP EXPLOITATIVE DEVELOPERS IN DOVER DISTRICT SEDD

STOP OVERDEVELOPMENT OF PADDOCK WOOD

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“We recognise that new homes need to be built, although we dispute the original targets set by the government which are now under question. What we are collectively calling for is that the right number of new homes are built on brownfield land and in the urban areas so badly in need of regeneration. We can have houses and green spaces, but it requires local authorities to choose the right option, not just the easiest one. The government needs to put the Prime Minister’s words about not building on green fields into policy. And it needs to be done now. That’s the only thing that’s going to stop this unfettered vandalism of the Garden of England.”

Dave Lovell, Save Kent’s Green Spaces coordinator A HUGE THANKYOU TO EVERYOBODY WHO SUPPORTED SAVE KENT’S GREEN SPACES’ DAY OF ACTION

IT’S TIME TO RETHINK WHERE WE BUILD HOUSES To view a selection of videos recorded on the Day of Action visit www.bit.ly/SKGSvid


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