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Songbird triumphs over vast development plan

Controversial plans for a vast housing development in Kent have been scrapped at the 11th hour - after a campaign by environmentalists.

The land at Chattenden on the Hoo Peninsula near Rochester, is a nationally protected Nightingale habitat - and the planning decision had been taken over by Government.

But the developers withdrew their application to build - just months before a public inquiry was due. Sarah Saunders spoke to Greg Hitchcock, Kent Wildlife Trust; leader of Medway Council Alan Jarrett and Rochester and Strood MP Kelly Tolhurst.

  1. David Johns (@davidjohns_itv)

Developer ditches plan for new Kent town

It was to be an entirely new town for Kent. Five thousand homes - and as many jobs.

The creation of Lodge Hill at Chattenden on the Hoo Peninsula was the biggest element of Medway's regeneration programme - and it was seen as a solution to the area's severe housing shortage.

Tonight, though, the developers confirmed they're pulling out after seven years of 'frustrating' planning - and 11 million pounds of costs. But backers of the project say it's not over.

David Johns reports, speaking to MP Kelly Tolhurst, two local residents, and Rodney Chambers from Medway Council.


Housing project stopped by birds

Medway Council and the RSPB are at loggerheads today, over the collapse of a project to build 5,000 new homes on the Hoo Peninsula.

A Government inspector rejected proposals to build on the former army base at Lodge Hill because of a colony of nightingales.

The council is blaming the RSPB for objecting at the last minute, but the charity says the council didn't do its homework.