When planning officers consider a planning application in a rural area one of the considerations is whether the application is inside or outside the existing built area of a village. At present Ashford Borough Council (ABC) rely on a written definition. This has been largely unchanged through several recent local plans . In the Ashford 2030 Plan it is as follows :
“the limits of continuous and contiguous development forming the existing built-up area of the settlement , excluding any curtilage beyond the built footprint of the buildings on the site ( eg garden areas )”
As part of this 2030 Plan ABC are making the definition clearer by adding a village confines map for all the settlements that have been listed in the Local Plan . This includes Brabourne and Smeeth. Other settlement areas of the parishes are not included in this map exercise.
Local knowledge will inform the map interpretation of “continuous and contiguous development.” The last point about gardens in the written definition means that map line will not include all gardens.
ABC asked the Parish Councils to comment on the map that the planners drew as their interpretation of the written definition. The map was modified at the Parish Council meeting on 5th February and will be submitted to ABC. It can be seen below:brabournelees_smeethv2