Thursday, 19 April 2012

Save Kingsmead Field

You may have read a while back about the proposal to sell off the above for housing. We had thought it was a done deal but have been informed that, due to some sort of administrative error, this is not the case. (Apparently the Council has made a blunder by failing to advertise its appropriation of the Kingsmead field for for two consecutive weeks in a local paper.  The advertisement was only published once and the Council now has to advertise it again.)


There exist a comprehensive list of reasons for such a possible objection, including some or all, of the following:
  • The Kingsmead Field is one of the last remnants of the once extensive water meadows which gave Kingsmead its name and character.
  • The field’s riverside location makes it important as a haven for wildlife.
  • The 2004 public consultation on the Kingsmead area showed that the local community wanted more open space and recreational facilities, not less!
  • In recent years, hundreds of houses have been built in the Kingsmead area without any new outdoor recreational facilities for children or young people. This field is the only public space large enough to play football or cricket.
  • The Kingsmead roundabout is a notorious congestion black-spot. More housing at this point will only aggravate the traffic problems.
  • The former coach park is still available for development, so why concrete over the only public green open space? After all, the Council’s document outlining its Open Space Strategy states that “It is vital that existing open space is protected from development” (point 2.2.6)
.Hope you all saw the Gazette this week, where the story made the front page, and had the editorial and several letters in support. Kingsmead Field will be debated by the Council at the meeting this Thursday, 26th April at the Guildhall. Doors to the public gallery open at 6:30 and the meeting starts at 7pm. The organisers of the campaign would like as many supporters there as possible, so if you are able to attend they would be very grateful for
your support. If anyone thinks that they might be able to fill the attached petition form with signatures before then and take it along, or get it to the organisers before Thursday, that would be also be good. Petitions will be presented within the first 45 minutes of the meeting and the public is free to leave afterwards.  The debate on Kingsmead Field will be later in the meeting.   (For the agenda see: Agenda 26/4/12) . For further details of the campaign go to kingsmeadfield.blogspot.com/ or type save kingsmead field into your search engine. There is also an e-petition to sign. The deadline for this is the 25th May. If there are 1500 signatures, the Council will be obliged to refer the Kingsmead issue to an Overview and Scrutiny  committee. Go to www.canterbury.gov.uk and click on 'Council and democracy' on the left.
Then, under 'Quick links' on the right, go to 'Petitions' and click on 'ePetitions' in the paragraph. Click on 'Kingsmead Playing Fields' and then click on 'log in or register and sign the ePetition' then 'register as a new user'. (It only takes minutes).

For more information regarding the campaign contact:
Sian Pettman at spettman@gn.apc.org  or Alan Thomas at alanthomas01@aol.com