ISLES QUARRY WEST
Isles Quarry was used for extraction of ragstone and this area was worked between the 1930s and the war. After that it became an uncontrolled landfill site. Hanson gave evidence that it was a 1970s engineered landfill site, ignoring the fact that there own Lawful Development Certificate showed the planning permission for the workshop building was in 1962 - it must have been built in mid-air.
THE EARLY CONSPIRACY:
In December 2003 BGPC Chair Sue Murray ( TM Cabinet Member for Planning) and Barry Hughes (Ex TMBC Leader) met with TMBC Planning Officers and Hanson's Development Manager, discussed to future of development on Isles Quarry East and West. Sue passed on the "Hanson Plan" to BGPC in Part 2 Confidential, so there is scant reference in the minutes . That plan was not made available to the public until 2011, despite multiple Freedom of Informations requests.
THE FORGED PARISH PLAN
In February 2005 we had a public exhibition in the Village Hall to consult with residents on a Parish Plan. Charles Willsher did a comprehensive analysis of comments reflecting the fact that no-one had ever heard of Isles Quarry West and the Hanson scheme. But when the Parish Plan was submitted in evidence to TMBC it included the ACTION PLAN referring to IQW Housing, and had changed "Villagers oppose more development" into "Development supported by villagers". (Note Action Plan is initialled by "BH" Barry Hughes). Sue Murray subsquently sent a copy of the "forged" Parish Plan to Chief Planner BRIAN GATES . The submission was never put before the Public or the Parish Council, and was subsequently declared invalid. But the damage was done - the Inspector approved Isles Quarry Housing. LDF CORE STRATEGY.
Despite many Freedom of Information requests to BGPC, the "HANSON PLAN" was not released until 2011, when the old Parish Council was deposed in an election.
CONSTRUCTION AND CONTAMINATION PHASE
An extremely comprehensive CONTAMINATION SURVEY was carried out by URS Scott Wilson, but unfortunately TMBC did not bother to ensure Crest's compliance. Crest began clearing contamination in November 2013, although they did not have Planning Approval until December 2013. When we complained to TMBC Lindsay Pearson Senior Planning Officer, said "It is species related ecological investigations ". (Full email trail) Crest assert they "removed contaminated material to a bunded stockpile", but their own photos proved that the bund was not completed until after the contaminated material was removed. To cover their tracks, they then moved hundred's of tonnes of soil to an inert landfill site at Burham, but the tickets list the material as "INERT". Was it a scam, or did they illegally export contaminated material to an inert landfill?
Photographs proved Crest had buried contamination on site, The "SMOKING GUN" , instead of being exported to a Hazardous Landfill, and the detailed sampling demanded was reduced to ONE SINGLE SAMPLE.
DIRTY TRICKS OR INCOMPETENCE ?.
Although earthmoving and remediation was commenced illegally on 13th Nov 2013, Kirstie (Atkins) Parr did not attend the site until 28th February 2014, as she admits in her email . She also spends some time ridiculing those who raised concerns, siding with her friends at Crest, despite never having visited the site or seeing what was happening.
Whilst it is true that the extensive deep percussive piling should stop subsidence of the houses, that may not be true of open ground on the estate. Crest are a commercial company, and one of the country's better developers, but the problems at IQW are solely the fault of TMBC in their abject failure to monitor the site properly, and ignoring clear evidence that the site was not suitable for housing, and Crest Nicholson have made the best of a bad job with a development that will stand up against other modern estates.
It is quite clear that Hanson and TMBC Planners deliberately misled Crest into believing that IQW was a 1970s Engineered inert waste landfill, wheras it was actually an unmonitored 1940/50s domestic and industrial waste site. TMBCs own evidence shows the workshop Planning Permission for 1962 - if the site was not landfilled until the 70s, the workshops must have been built in mid-air.
One of the anomalies that came to light because of our constant vigilance, was that Crest were importing Garden Topsoil that was more contaminated with arsenic that that whiich they had stripped!
We must be ever vigilant - TMBC have form in allowing a partial development, that gives them a precedent to expand the development in the future. Isles Quarry East may well be Greenbelt, AONB, Special Scientific Interest, Bourne Valley Conservation Area, and Planning Conditoned as Public Amenity Land. Very strong constraints against development indeed, but just a stroke of the pen to TMBC. I am sure TMBC still have a copy of the Hanson Plan in a drawer, ready for the future.
Update 2022 - Isles Quarry East is now in the posession of Borough Green PC, forever safe from the crooks at TMBC.