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Bonkers Blog April 2015

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13 April (Part 2) - Crayford child care plans rejected

The amount people pay for childcare services these days is staggering, another area of life where things seem to have got much worse since I had any use for such facilities.

Unsurprisingly it is an election issue for some candidates.

Child CareThis is an extract from one of Anna Firth’s many leaflets. As a Conservative she should know that the traditional way to make something cheaper is to produce more of it but Bexley council is not doing a lot towards making that possible in the realm of child care.

According to Google and Mumsnet there is only one nursery In Crayford catering for very young children. It is the Gaggle Nursery run by Sheonalli Malhotra.

In January Sheonalli applied to Bexley council for permission to build a new nursery on land she owned by the old Wansunt Pumping Station; permission had already been granted in November 2014 for a day care centre at the site. The nursery was in effect a change of mind.

Google mapsWanshunt Pumping Station and the applicant’s land lies alongside the railway line only a short distance west of Crayford Station and hidden from view by tall trees.

Bexley council went through their usual routine, consulting everyone who might be affected by the development. Three councillors, no comment. Transport services, no comment. The Drainage Team, Bexley Natural Environment Forum and UK Power Networks, all no comment.

Was the land contaminated, was it emitting radon gas? No and no.

Did it perhaps offend against Bexley’s Planning Policies?

Doesn’t look like it; so Crayford will soon get additional and improved child care facilities, right? No wrong.

The application was rejected because the proposed building was not in keeping with the open character of the local environment. The applicant was invited to discuss a revised application.

Before doing so the applicant is looking to support the next application with yet another petition! The plans will create 15 jobs and provide much needed child care places in a building to be erected within the owner’s own extensive garden.

Meanwhile the major provider of child care facilities in Bexley remains councillor John Waters’ Bexley Manor Nursery School where he has been director for the past twelve years.


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