DIARY

May 2011
The Examination in Public commenced. The Council were in a difficult position as soon as they were asked if they wished to contest the EEA figures that 5,000+ homes were required in the Borough. Twice they agreed that this was the requirement. The arrangement between Mainland Green Belt Campaigners and Councillors to target the bulk of housing onto Canvey Island was proven by us and accepted by the Planning Inspector, known from then on as “local factors.”

The Hearing was suspended at the new Governments intention to revoke the Regional Strategy with the possibility that local Councils could set their own housing targets. However in a letter to the Council the P.Inspector stated “The Council’s desire to protect its Green Belt areas is understandable but its approach has also had a considerable bearing on the overall distribution of growth promoted in the Core Strategy. In this respect, I consider it would be difficult to endorse a strategy which commits to Green Belt release in an area of potential high flood risk at Canvey Island yet fails to identify more than a token amount of land on the mainland where flooding is not a significant issue. While I accept some development at Canvey Island may be required to meet local needs and to support services, I am not convinced that maintaining the current distribution of development across the Borough is justified given the existing constraints.” Later suggesting the Council withdrew the Core Strategy Document as being unsound.
June 2011
The Planning Inspector wrote again to the Council allowing more time for them to complete extra work required. This should have meant allocating Mainland sites for development, and the Council wrote confirming that was what they intended to consider.
September 2011
Councillor Conference was held to consider which Mainland Green Belt sites should be added to the allocation for the Inspector to consider. The Canvey Green Belt Campaign Group were invited and duly presented. We made it clear that the Inspector had realised that developing on the Flood Plain on Canvey was against good planning practise and alongside the fact that our land was also Green Belt should mean a successful defence against development. Later in the month Councillors were asked to allocate Mainland sites as required. Following a feisty campaign by Jotmans Mainland group the Councillors, mindful of elections approaching early 2012 voted to withdraw the Core Strategy.
October 2011
Bob Neill MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State was informed of the decision. An exercise costing some £500,000 was ended and a new exercise to produce a New Local Plan commenced. The programme aims to have a Plan prepared for examination in October 2013 with adoption scheduled by February 2014. Delay will pressurise the Borough’s Green Belt from development.

June 22nd 2010

 

Examination of the Core Strategy in public by the Planning Inspector Mr Paul Crysell commences at the Runnymede Council Chamber.

April 24th 2010

 

RSPB opens the Canvey West Marsh site to the Public. This site however, is ear-marked by the Thames 2100 Agency to be flooded with a new sea wall running alongside Canvey Way and Canvey Road to replenish coastal squeeze and habitat to be reviewed in around fifteen years time. It is being used to show the Planning Inspector how the Council are defending our green belt whilst “reluctantly” offering the Dutch Village green belt fields to development.

March 1st 2010

 

The Castle Point Core Strategy was submitted to the Secretary of State for Examination in Public.

November 2009

 

The Canvey Greenbelt Campaign Group submitted a full objection to the over development of Canvey Island and the loss of our depleted greenbelt land. This can be viewed via the link on the Home Page of this website.

September 29th 2009

 

The Council agreed to adopt the Core Strategy Document.
One Canvey Councillor voted in favour, all others eligible to vote, voted against.
One Mainland Councillor voted against, all others eligible to vote, voted for.

September 2009

 

Presentation.

Presentation to the Council’s Full Special Policy and Development Group.
Having been misled by the Risk Group and Officers our Presentation consisted of informing the Councillors of our concerns and of our intention to direct all further issues directly to the Planning Inspectorate who’s task it is to approve or revoke the Core Strategy Document.

July / August 2009

 

Referendum result.

The Referendum result put the Council in the position of having to recognise our protest and forced the first meeting with the Special Policy and Development Group – Risk Task Group. Unable to answer any of our concerns regarding further developing Canvey Island a second meeting was agreed so as to give the Council members consideration time. The second meeting started farcically with the Council Officers presentation of the proposed RSPB site on Canvey West Marsh and then engaging us over the planned redevelopment of the Town Centre. Both topics we were forced to interrupt as neither were amongst our concerns, which they were supposed to be considering. Unable to offer any concerns ex planning officer, Mr. Burchill compiled a list of points of agreement. We were told that we would need to put a Presentation to the full PDG so that our points could be incorporated into the Core Strategy Document. The Chief Executive agreed to provide a copy of the agreed wording prior to our Presentation. Unfortunately this document never materialised.

May 27th 2009

 

Referendum completed.

Referendum completed and counted. Details can be seen in full on News Page

April 25th 2009

 

Referendum commences.

35 teams of Volunteers armed with maps, voting slips, clipboards and pens and sealed jars to collect the completed votes, set out across the Island. Early birds met at the Dutch Cottage at 9.30am. Two weeks of giving up spare time to offer the Island residents a chance to have their say. Public spirited and we are proud of them.

Click HERE to see the pictures

April 22nd 2009

 

Meeting held in Northwick School.

Upwards of 150 attended. Audience was addressed by Dave Blackwell who spoke on the greenbelt and wildlife issues, Simon Hart of the Thundersley Action Group, who told of his groups struggle and offered support and encouragement, Steve Sawkins who told of concerns of the two top tier COMAH sites locally and in particular the Calor Gas spillage.

Ray Howard spoke of his experiences in previous battles to preserve the greenbelt.

Click HERE to see the pictures

March 24th 2009

 

Email Question to Council Cabinet Members

Dear Councillor, I am concerned at the accuracy of the findings of the Core Strategy Questionnaire. From my contact with residents of the Dutch Village, Canvey Island, I am aware that many of them failed to receive a brochure or the Questionnaire form.

1) May I ask if any market research was undertaken to check what percentage of the mail out was actually received?

2) If so, may I ask what the results were, area for area, and whether this was independent research? 3) Has the Mail out data been checked? If so, against what? Of those that received the Core Strategy mail out, are you aware that we on Canvey Island feel we have been misled.

1) May I ask whether it was an intentional decision, or whether it was simply overlooked, to not print a map / plan of the Dutch Village fields you hope to concrete over?

2) Was the use of the term "land East of Canvey Road" rather than "land abutting the Dutch Village" used as an intentional psychological tactic so as not to alert the residents? I worry that the Council Planning Department may be misleading the Residents, the very people that pay their wages, and the Councillors.

Awaiting a response.

March 17th 2009

 

Questions asked at the South East Essex Council Forum.

1. Has any plan for a new road behind Holland Avenue been passed or submitted ?

2. Traffic travelling from Waterside Farm Roundabout into Canvey Island. Can the latest, Traffic Flow Survey results, for peak weekday, rush hours be made available to the Canvey Green Belt Campaign Group? Has any congestion predictions been made for after, the planned building of the 1,500 homes and the creation of 1,500 new jobs?

3. Flooding The Environment Agency has halted the current building projects due to the risk of Canvey Island suffering from flooding. Professor Konrad Steffen of the University of Colorado, has studied, for 35 years, the effects of melting, of the Arctic ice on sea levels. His latest findings predict that sea levels will actually rise by 1 metre rather than the previously predicted 59 centimetres. As evacuation for the current population of Canvey would be impossible, is it not wise to permanently abandon all future building whether commercial or Residential?

Awaiting a response.

March 17th 2009

 

South East Essex Council's Forum Managed to put a few questions to the Chair re Congestion, road to rear of Holland Avenue and Flood Plain concerns.

March 16th 2009

 

Our first bit of publicity. Major story taking most of page two in the Echo.
Interviews with Bob Spink M.P. Dennis Williams and George Whatley.

March 13th 2009

 

Interview with Echo and photo shoot for about a dozen neighbours who were available at very short notice.

March 12th 2009

 

I sent an email to the Echo Newspaper explaining previous night's meeting.

March 11th 2009

 

Green Belt Campaign 1st Meeting held at the Heritage Centre Canvey Road Excellent turn out of at least 80 people. Mood was right and Committee elected. Coincidently, Petition was presented to Parliament same evening. What a good day !

March 8th 2009

 

Ex Mayor Dennis Williams and George Whatley invited to join Campaign Group as advisors. Both accept.

March 7th 2009

 

Leaflet drop around 120 homes in the Dutch Village inviting residents to a Community Meeting

March 5th 2009

 

Petition sent to Dr Bob Spink M.P.

March 4th 2009

 

Last names added to Petition. George Whatley offers advice on campaign group.

February 20th 2009

 

Simon Hart of the Thundersley Green Belt campaign contacted for advice.

Petition started against proposed building plan on the Dutch Village Green Belt