Last night Canterbury City Council Planning Committee removed a condition on the Crab and Winkle Line Trust’s successful planning application (CC/15/01614/VAR) to extend the Crab and Winkle Way path from the railway to the harbour in Whitstable. The condition had meant that the Trust could not start work on a path until the bridge over Teynham Road had been completed.
The Committee heard residents’ concerns that the path might be built to the edge of the bridge abutments, leaving a high drop to the road beneath. The Trust has no intention of doing anything so irresponsible. We will not build any paths along the route that are inaccessible until the bridges over Teynham Road and the railway are planned and funded.
The Committee heard how the Trust intends to re-submit a new planning application for the bridges next year, given that our earlier successful application has now lapsed. The new planning application will take advantage of new developments in low-level lighting and screening. All existing plans to plant thousands of new shrubs and trees along the route will stay in place.
After debate and legal advice, and while recognising residents’ concerns, the Committee agreed that the Trust ought to be allowed to get on with our project to extend the popular footpath and cycle path. They commended the quality of our planning documents and agreed that the Crab and Winkle Way was an asset to the town. The lifting of the planning condition means that the Trust can now take action, where appropriate, to improve local links along the route so that they become safer and more usable.
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