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Headcorn residents oppose ‘concrete jungle’ plans

Plans to build 120 new homes in Kent have met opposition from residents and a parish council.

Residents have compared the expansion near Headcorn to a “concrete jungle being constructed at the bottom of our garden".

Catesby Estates said it would be a “high quality residential development” which will include 48 affordable homes, children’s play areas, tree planting and new footpaths.

But Headcorn Parish Council expressed concerns over strained infrastructure.

Writing to the Maidstone Borough Council’s (MBC) planning department, residents expressed fears additional houses would change the character of the village.

Deano English said the infrastructure "can not take any more new housing estates," adding the land regularly flooded.

“Me and my wife moved here for a better quality of life and fresh air, we do not want another concrete jungle being constructed at the bottom of our garden," he added.

Caroline Kingsnorth said Headcorn was "quickly becoming a town".

“The extra traffic flow and extra pollution will make our peaceful village no different to the noisy towns nearby,” she added.

A council spokesperson highlighted existing water-supply issues in the area, arguing additional housing would “further stress an overworked system.”

“We have had ‘hosepipe bans’ in the South East for years now,” he said, adding these are now joined by "unplanned water outages where the water pipes provision can no longer cope during the summer".

Catesby Estates said it was "striving to create a high quality residential development on the western fringe of Headcorn".

It said the site was suitable to accommodate housing development to meet the "borough’s identified needs".

It added the bid would “provide a new piece of open space that will benefit not only the residents of the development but the neighbouring areas in Headcorn".

An internal deadline to decide on the outline planning application has been set to April 2024 by MBC.

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