Funding boost for community facilities


Parks and play areas are among the facilities to be improved thanks to the hard work of Ashford Borough Council’s Planning team in gaining section 106 funding.

At last night’s Cabinet meeting, councillors heard that more than £767,000 had been collected in section 106 funding in 2018/19, which will help improve voluntary services, outdoor spaces, parks and allotments in Tenterden; play areas in Wye and Challock; and help fund the improvements to Victoria Park.

A section 106 agreement allows the council, as the local planning authority, to enter into a legally binding agreement with a land developer over an issue related to the development proposed. These obligations enable the council to secure contributions to services, amenities or infrastructure to help meet the needs arising from that development.

The Cabinet report detailed how funding for a cycle path at Gordon Jones Playing Trail, upgrades to the outside space at Hopes Grove and improvements to allotments and outdoor sports facilities across the borough, have been agreed with developers in connection with planning applications submitted in 2018-19.

Council staff work hard to ensure this funding is strategically aligned, agreed and paid, which was also highlighted in the report, as they are a crucial part of planning permission.

Cllr Neil Shorter, Portfolio Holder for Planning and Development, said: “Section 106 funding is vital to help us improve the infrastructure around larger developments, in ways that we would not be able to do without it. We have been successful over the past few years in agreeing substantial levels of section 106 funding, to really make these developments benefit residents of the whole borough of Ashford.”

You can read the full Cabinet report.


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