Dear Kent County Council,
Please provide details of all communication between Kent County Council and Stone Hill Park Ltd (or its agents, including GVA and Pillory Barn Ltd) relating to the proposed "masterplan" to build around 4,000 houses on Manston Airport.
Also, can you specifically confirm whether or not KCC (or Invicta Law Ltd, on its behalf) has been asked to provide land interest information to Stone Hill Park Ltd (or its agents), and if so, whether such information was provided without protest as to costs.
Dear Mr Allison
Thank you for your email below.
Kent County Council acknowledges your request for information under the
Freedom of Information Act 2000. Assuming KCC holds this information, we
will endeavour to supply the data to you as soon as possible but no later
than 2^nd January 2018 (20 working days from date of receipt).
We will advise you as soon as possible if we do not hold this information
or if there are exemptions to be considered and/or any costs for providing
the information. Please quote our reference - FOI/17/2070 - in any
communication regarding this particular request.
Peter Wylie | Information Access Officer | Information Resilience &
Transparency Team | Room 2.71, Sessions House, Maidstone | Tel 03000
415563 | Fax 03000 420303 |
Dear Mr Allison
Thank you for your request for information made under the Freedom of
Information Act (FOIA) 2000, relating to Stone Hill Park. I am pleased to
provide the response below:
The company which is proposing to develop the Manston Airport site, Stone
Hill Park Ltd, gave a presentation to the Council’s Cabinet Committee on
Growth, Economic Development and Communities Cabinet Committee on the 21
November 2017 which is attached. The only other relevant document held by
Kent County Council is also attached.
We can confirm that pre-application discussions have taken place with the
prospective developers but we are unable to disclose any information
resulting from those discussions. Pre-planning application information
falls under the scope of the Environmental Information Regulations (EIR)
and in withholding this information the Council relies upon the Regulation
12(5)(e) exception to withhold the information. We draw your attention to
the advice of the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister (now the Department
for Communities and Local Government) contained in "Planning Policy
Statement 1: Delivering Sustainable development" (2005). Specifically
paragraph 13 of the advice states -
"Pre-application discussions are critically important and benefit both
developers and local planning authorities in ensuring a better mutual
understanding of objectives and constraints that exist. In the course of
such discussions proposals can be adapted to ensure that they better
reflect community aspirations and that applications are complete and
address all the relevant issues. Local planning authorities and applicants
should take a positive attitude towards early engagement in
pre-application discussions so that formal applications can be dealt with
in a more certain and speedy manner and the quality of the decisions can
be better assured"
The information Commissioner who is the regulator for compliance with the
EIR, has acknowledged the consultation obligations inherent within the
planning application process and has stated that "unless and until an
application is formally received, a strong argument exists which says that
the Council should be given space in which to discuss and reflect on the
evolving issues raised during the pre-application stage. Further,
particular care must be taken where the information being considered, i.e.
the proposal, has been provided by the third party, the developer, on the
assumption that it should be kept confidential.
If you are unhappy with this response, and believe KCC has not complied
with legislation, please ask for a review by following our complaints
process; details can be found at this link
on our website. Please quote reference FOI/17/2070.
If you still remain dissatisfied following an internal review, you can
appeal to the Information Commissioner, who oversees compliance with the
Freedom of Information Act 2000. Details of what you need to do, should
you wish to pursue this course of action, are available from the
Information Commissioner’s website http://www.ico.org.uk/concerns.
Kirsty-Leigh Robertson| Information Access Officer | Information
Resilience & Transparency Team | Room 2.87, Sessions House, Maidstone |
Tel 03000 418301 | Fax 03000 420303 |
Dear Kent County Council,
Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.
I am writing to request an internal review of Kent County Council's handling of my FOI request 'Information Sharing with Stone Hill Park Ltd'.
Your justification for withholding the majority of information requested is based on outdated and flawed information. The Planning Policy Statement you have quoted is not only not legally-binding, but vastly out of date, having been replaced by the National Planning Policy Framework in 2012. It is concerning that a County Council is not aware of this fact.
Furthermore, my request has been made under FOIA2000, not EIR2004. I have not requested Environmental Information, I have requested details of communications between KCC and the parties interested in the Manston Airport site.
The fact that you have provided the SHP presentation file suggests that there have been communications between KCC and SHP. I should remind you that such communications can extend to emails, and this includes personal email accounts (https://ico.org.uk/media/for-organisatio....
A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/i...
Dear Mr Allison
Thank you for your email. Please accept my sincere apologies for the delay in acknowledging receipt.
I am sorry you are unhappy with KCC’s response to your request for information, specifically the use of the confidentiality of commercial or industrial information exception under regulation 12(5)(e) of the Environmental Information Regulations to withhold details of communications between Kent County Council and Stone Hill Park Ltd.
An independent officer who was not involved with your original request will investigate your complaint and review our original response on behalf of the Head of Paid Service. Their reply will be forthcoming within 20 working days from receipt (by 31st January 2018)
Caroline Dodge | Team Leader | Information Resilience & Transparency Team | Kent County Council | Room 2.87, Sessions House, Maidstone, ME14 1XQ | Phone 03000 416033 | Fax 03000 420303 | http://www.kent.gov.uk/about-the-council... |