Disposal of Open Space at Franklin Drive
- Meeting of Heritage, Culture and Leisure Committee, Tuesday 3rd July, 2018 6.30 pm (Item 33.)
- View the background to item 33.
The Committee considered the report of Mrs Jennifer Shepherd, the Head of Environment and Public Realm in regard to the disposal of Franklin Drive Open Space by long lease to Boxley Parish Council.
It was noted that the Maidstone Play Area Policy was brought to this Committee in October last year. In that report it was agreed that non-strategic play areas would not be maintained in the future using the Council’s resources but instead they would be offered to Parish Councils, Housing Associations and other Community Groups to take over the maintenance and running of them. Franklin Drive was one of the play areas considered to be non-strategic as there were two other play areas in the area.
Mrs Pauline Bowdrey addressed the Committee on behalf of Boxley Parish Council and stated that this was a good example of localism and partnership working to provide what was best for the community. She also emphasised that the Parish Council had secured external funding to replace and add equipment to the play area and were willing and able to take over the maintenance of this site.
Chairman read out a statement on behalf of Councillor Mrs Hinder
who was a Ward Member for Boxley who stated that the Franklin Drive
open space was greatly used by local children due to its close
proximity to the houses on Grove Green.
It was also noted that the closest play area was a good 12
minutes walk away. Its loss to the local community would have had a
detrimental effect on the local community.
In response to questions from Members, Mrs Claudette Valmond, the Team Leader Property and Regeneration (Solicitor) advised that if as was being advised that the land in question was of relative low value (as it could not be used as anything other than a public open space) then it just needed a valuer to confirm that the rent of a peppercorn was the best consideration that could reasonably be obtained.
The Council was of the view that Boxley Parish Council taking over the maintenance of the open space would be the best outcome for all concerned. The reason the Council had leased it rather than handed over the freehold was due to a change in policy that was adopted by Policy and Resources Committee and it would ensure that it is used as a public open space.
That agreement be given to the disposal of Franklin
Drive open space to Boxley Parish Council by a long lease (99
years) and that the land be declared surplus to operational
That the proposed disposal be advertised for two
consecutive weeks in a local newspaper and consideration be given
by the Committee to any objections that may be received in
That the Director of Finance and Business
Improvement be authorised to negotiate, agree and complete the
Lease and such other documents and to undertake such steps as are
necessary and incidental to the recommendations in this
- Disposal of open space at Franklin Drive, item 33. PDF 64 KB View as HTML (33./1) 51 KB
- Appendix 1 Map of Franklin Drive Open Space, item 33. PDF 371 KB View as HTML (33./2) 2 KB
- Appendix 2 Draft Heads of Terms, item 33. PDF 43 KB View as HTML (33./3) 12 KB