KCC calls for archaeological investigation of Windmill Lane site.

Ms Wendy Rogers of the Heritage Conservation section of Kent County Council has called for a full investigation of the site adjoining Windmill Lane in Hollingbourne where a planning application has been made for 12 houses. The application has been opposed by Hollingbourne Parish Council, Hollingbourne Village Hall Committee, and by various local residents principally because of the site access which is via a privately owned and narrow Public Footpath (PROW KH199).

On a document filed with Maidstone Borough Council and on their planning website (application reference 16/508436/FULL), Ms Rogers writes:-

This scheme is likely to have an impact on the designated historic buildings of Eyhorne Street; the historic character of the settlement, defined by the Conservation Area and its setting; and the setting of any other heritage assets, such as Grove Mill and its historic access. These issues are important and need to be thoroughly assessed.

I recommend consultation with the District Conservation Officer to clarify these issues. In terms of archaeology, there would be some potential for archaeological remains but if the site has been subject to extraction as suggested by the 3rd Ed OS map, then no archaeology would survive.

As such I recommend the following condition but this could be reviewed if the applicant can clarify the extent and depth of previous ground disturbance:

Prior to the commencement of development the applicant, or their agents or successors in title, will secure and implement:

i archaeological field evaluation works in accordance with a specification and written timetable which has been submitted to and approved by the Local Planning Authority;

and ii further archaeological investigation, recording and reporting, determined by the results of the evaluation, in accordance with a specification and timetable which has been submitted to and approved by the Local Planning Authority

Reason: To ensure that features of archaeological interest are properly examined and recorded.

The closing date for comments is 17th February 2017 and these should be sent to planningcomments@midkent.gov.uk

Pictured below is the view down Windmill Lane with the Village Hall and Windmill PH on the left and the possible development site on the right.

Windmill Lane view from Foxgrove House January 2017