Tunbridge Wells Borough Council (TWBC) are developing their Local Plan for the period to 2036.  It is expected that they need to provide for an additional 13k homes in the borough during this period.  Local Plans set out the strategic priorities for development of an area and cover housing, commercial, public and private development, including transport infrastructure, along with protection for the local environment. They comprise a series of documents that should set out clear guidance on what development will and won’t be permitted in an area.

In preparing their Local Plan, TWBC have undertaken a “Call for Sites” exercise where landowners notify TWBC of their land available to be developed.  The Call for Sites was followed by an Issues and Options document setting out the Borough Council’s initial thoughts about what a new Local Plan should contain and the issues it should address. It also sets out a number of possible options for where and how the future growth of the borough might be located.  We are now into the Regulation 18 phase of the draft Local Plan where the full details of the proposal, showing exactly which areas are to be developed, are subject to public consultation.

The Draft Local Plan has now been released into the public domain for approval by TWBC.  The full draft plan for the borough can be found here under item 7. 

Pembury has been allocated 294 – 304 houses in the Plan (not the 1300 that were originally suggested, we have our Borough and County Councillors to thank for the massive reduction) which are planned on 5 separate plots, to include the development at Sturgeons which already has permission.  The Tesco site is also included and has been allocated for a motor village in light of the Planning Application for the Hendy motor village proposed.

Map of Pembury

The map shows the proposed areas for residential development in purple, mainly along the A21 corridor.  An area of mixed employment is proposed adjacent to Downingbury Farm on the Maidstone Road, shown in blue.

TWBC has confirmed that the current timetable includes

  • a six-week consultation on the Draft Local Plan (Regulation 18) –  from Friday 20 September to Friday 01 November 2019.
  • a consultation on a Pre-Submission Local Plan (Regulation 19) – from Friday 07 August to Friday 02 October 2020;
  • submission of the plan – December 2020.

Next steps

  • The Draft Local Plan will be added to the agenda for the Planning & Highways Committee meeting of Pembury Parish Council at 7:30pm on the 16 September.  The public are welcome to attend the meeting.
  • A public meeting organised by Pembury Parish Council will be held on 23 September at the Village Hall to hear your views.  Please look out for details on posters and advertising over the coming weeks.
  • A public exhibition, organised by TWBC will be held on 2 October at the village hall from 4pm to 7pm.  They will display the plan, have hard copies available and Officers from the Planning Policy Team to answer questions.

We look forward to seeing you at the forthcoming meetings to hear your views.

Elsewhere in the Borough

In June 2019, the press released the information that some 4,000 new homes were planned around Paddock Wood and a new “Garden Village” of 2,600 homes planned at Tudely.  Details of the proposal can be found in the draft local plan.  In summary, the total dwellings proposed for each parish is as follows:

  • Tunbridge Wells – 1,222 to 1,320 new dwellings
  • Paddock Wood – 4,000 new dwellings around the town but many located in Capel parish
  • Capel – 2,500 to 2,800 new dwellings in the Tudely Garden Village
  • Benenden – 119 to 129 new dwellings
  • Bidborough – 0 new dwellings
  • Brenchley – 0 new dwellings
  • Cranbrook – 718-803 new dwellings
  • Frittenden – 25-30 new dwellings
  • Goudhurst – 21-26 new dwellings
  • Hawkhurst – 643-693 new dwellings
  • Horsmonden – 225-305 new dwellings
  • Lamberhurst – 50-60 new dwellings
  • Matfield – 91-150 new dwellings
  • Pembury – 294-304 new dwellings
  • Rusthall – 15 new dwellings
  • Sandhurst – 20-27 new dwellings
  • Sissinghurst – 100-115 new dwellings
  • Speldhurst – 15-20 new dwellings

Updates will be posted here when they become available.