My KCC Election Manifesto & Video

Tuesday, 18 October 2016

Brett’s & Ramsgate Port. Something’s Not Right?

I have been studying the documents on Kent County Council’swebsite about  Brett Aggregates proposals to install an aggregate washing plant at Ramsgate port and presumably expand and intensify their  concrete manufacturing operations there. The documents show that Brett’s established their current concrete batching operation at the port in 2010. But on studying the documents I’m worried that the original permission for Brett to operate from Ramsgate Port might not have been properly granted.

In a letter to Brett dated 28 May 2010 TDCs then Head of Major Developments, Doug Brown, states  that the Ramsgate Port Harbourmaster had prepared a report for English Nature about Brett’s  “batching plant proposal”. For the Harbourmaster to have produced such a report for English Nature seems very odd to me.  Ramsgate Port is located in the middle of an extremely sensitive marine area which is protected by several different specialist designations. The port is adjacent to a site of special scientific interest (SSCI), it’s close to a special area of conservation (SAC) and a special protection area (SPA). The port also falls within a marine conservation area (MCA) and there is also a rare Ramsar designated area of coastline next to the port. Bearing in mind the complex and extremely technical nature of these special environmental protection designations I cannot believe that it was appropriate for Thanet Council to have delegated the task of writing a “report to English Nature with regard to the batching plant” to its Habourmaster.

The Ramsgate Port  Habourmaster is not qualified in marine environmental science. It is my opinion that he is not competent to produce a report on the environmental impact of a concrete batching plant upon the protected marine habitats adjacent and close to the port. I’m astounded that Thanet Council’s then  Head of Major Developments, Doug Brown, seemed happy to accept a report from an  unqualified person as “confirmation of how environmental implications (relating to the Brett concrete batching plant)  were addressed”. However, this is same Doug Brown who,  after leaving TDC, teamed up with his  former boss and ex-Director of TDC Planning, Brian White, to  advise O’Regan’s on their unsuccessful application to set up a concrete block manufactory at Ramsgate  Port.

The right thing to have done in 2010 would have been for Thanet Council and Kent County Council to have insisted that a proper independent environmental impact assessment of Brett’s concrete batching plant be carried out by a suitably qualified marine environment protection expert and that this report would have then been sent to English Nature for them to decide if Ramsgate port was a suitable location for an industrial operation such as this.  KCC and TDC should also have insisted that such a report be produced at Brett’s expense, rather than what appears to have been a highly irregular and  improper freebie from an unqualified council employee.

I will be contacting Thanet Council, KCC  and English Nature to find out exactly what happened in 2010 because from where I’m  standing it looks as though  the existing operation may well be environmentally compromised, which will of course have implications  for Bretts new proposals.

 

 

10 comments:

  1. Well said Ian - more dodgy goings-on at the Port. Who actually works there now?

    What happened with the GIAA £500,000 Port fraud?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Good to see at least one of our councilors is active on this - have RTC/TDC councilors approved it already?

    ReplyDelete
  3. No RTC Have issued strong concerns and have asked it be called in at KCC. regards Cllr Stuart Piper

    ReplyDelete
  4. 15:56 Why haven't RTC simply rejectd it?

    ReplyDelete
  5. The largest crane in the UK has suddenly appeared art Ramsgate port for improvements - so why were the pontoons removed?

    ReplyDelete
  6. what happened with the Coastal Communities Harbour street fund? That was paid to RTC before the Summer

    ReplyDelete
  7. Isn't Piper also on KCC with Shonk and Heale?

    ReplyDelete
  8. What's the SLipways building again? Not the porthole café aqgain with jack baker?

    ReplyDelete
  9. Yes Jack's back with the slipway café venture - have RTC refused this or are they still paying him for the council offices?

    ReplyDelete
  10. Yes it's Jack again - first the porthole restaurant then the Hornby centre now a café. He must have very good friends onhte council to allow these changes...

    ReplyDelete