84% of Planning Comments Still Oppose Hub Plans

As of Sunday 9th October, I have calculated that there were 29 supporters and 158 opponents of the Hub planning application from named individuals or organisations visible on the Tunbridge Wells planning website.  There was one neutral comment. This means 84 per cent of comments were opposed.

The people of Southborough now wait to see what the recommendation to councillors will be from the professional planning officers at Tunbridge Wells.  The date of the decision by councillors is still to be announced. It is expected in the next few weeks.

The full comments are available elsewhere on this blog, but I have summarised them below, with contributors organised in alphabetical order by surname.


Mrs Jean Allanach Grimsby Some of the design is not to my taste
Cllr Bob Backhouse (Con) T Wells RVH is not fit for 21st century while hub will provide a much needed focus for civic purposes
Alan Collins Sboro Hub will provide improved modern facilities
Cllr David Elliot (Con) Sboro Currently mayor of Sboro – will put heart back into town and improve its appearance
Alex Green (Trinity Theatre) T Wells RVH would need significant upgrades to provide a venue of standard area deserves so redevelop
Cllr Nasir Jamil (Con) Sboro We get a brand new state of the art theatre
Jacqueline Jedrzejewski Sboro Hub will be the envy of other towns
Ian Kinghorn Sboro Can’t wait for heart to be put back in town. We need new hall for non-theatre groups as used to happen in RVH
Olwyn Kinghorn (Southboro Society committee) Sboro Loss of RVH offset by exciting community centre We hope for museum space in new hub
Benjamin Lester Sboro Saddening that RVH ends but need sth new
Sarah Lester Sboro Welcome plan to revitalise high street
Cllr Glenn Lester (Con) Sboro Building is wonderful opportunity for Sboro
Cllr Mrs Leah Markwell (Con) Sboro Football players will still have plenty of pitches
David Marshall T Wells I am a patient at St Andrews medical centre and it needs a bigger building
Neil Maxfield Sboro Object to theatre being included
Lindy Maxfield Sboro Hub access is badly planned but supports Hub
Judith Mitchell Smarden Hub will put heart back into Sboro
Gary Mitchell Smarden Owns Sboro shops – Hub is truly visionary
Ms Nikita Oakford Sboro Hub is a wonderful, new & exciting development
Mrs Sharon Oakford Sboro Hub will be great asset & meeting place
Cllr Peter Oakford (Con) Sboro Hub vibrant focal point & fabulous design
Jacqueline Prance Sboro Hub provides much needed focal point
Judy Rose Sboro Sboro in need of a facelift Hub achieves this
Mike Scott Sboro RVH is unloved and underused hall
Mrs Tanya Shaw (St Andrew’s Medical Centre) Sboro Hub will provide a bigger medical centre for our patients
Mrs Shahanara Uddin Sboro Area needs investment for regeneration
Cllr Zulhash Uddin (Con) Sboro Housing should be sympathetic to area
Rachel Wilson (vicar St Thomas’ Church) Sboro Hub has potential to improve social cohesion but residents’ concerns need to be addressed
Jennifer Wright Sboro Wants theatre but worried about parking/noise


Simon Miller Sboro Saddened to hear about loss of soccer pitches


Sharon Acton (Sboro Brownies) Sboro Our brownie unit have missed panto
Mark Airey Paddock Wd My online petition had 5,000 signatures to save RVH–no mandate to demolish historic RVH
Jon Alcock Sboro Hub is badly designed box– seats don’t face stage
Pauline Alexander Sboro RVH is a Heritage Asset
Steve Allan Sboro RVH has been jewel in the Sboro crown – no need for another community space
Barbara Anderson ?? * RVH is a treasure in the community
Sally Angell Sboro I live in Hythe Close – Hub is in my back yard – its design would make me ashamed and embarrassed to live in Sboro
Mrs Teresa Baldock Crowborough RVH is a piece of history – listen to people
Mary Banks-Murayama Sboro Majority of residents want RVH renovated
Ian Barker Sboro RVH is building of great historical interest
Mrs Leonie Barker Sboro Hub is not viable as a hall, let alone a theatre
Margaret Barnes Sboro People in Sboro are horrified at dreadful hub
Joanna Bell Sboro Please don’t destroy this historic venue
Amelia Bell-Richards Tonbridge* Air pollution will worsen for my auntie
Letita Bell-Richards Tun Wells Object to historic heritage being torn down
Keith Bennett T Wells Keep historic amenity given by Salomons
Mrs Judi Best T Wells Preserve RVH as a community historic asset
Gwendoline Betts Sboro Prefer to keep RVH – new build doesn’t fit
Martin Betts Sboro Hub is totally inappropriate in style
Miss Rebecca Bing Tonbridge* RVH is heritage and a great venue; Hub hideous
Richard Blackwell Romney Marsh* Former Sboro mayor who served on council for 31 years. Hub design is “a large plastic lunch box” dropped in the middle of our town.
Mrs Diana C Blackwell Romney Marsh* Hub design is an “eyesore”
Ms Diana Blackwell Sboro Hub design is not in keeping with street scene
Cllr Nicholas Blackwell (Labour) Sboro Was mayor when hub tentatively first agreed, it is untrue that RVH is not fit for purpose – RVH is structurally sound & rewired recently
Cllr Fiona Brown (Labour) Sboro As Head of a Drama college, thinks hub space falls far short of “state of the art” theatre
Tamsin Brownbridge T Wells Hub is a disaster waiting to happen
Sylvia Browning Hounslow We deplore demolition without reason
Laurie Buckingham Wadhurst RVH is a gem of Victoriana
Chloe Byrne Sboro Shocked and appalled at monstrosity
David Byrne Sboro Looks laughably cheap and ugly
Jane Carden Sboro RVH is an iconic landmark
Judy Cave Sboro Hub is expensive modern monstrosity
Mr Leigh Chatfield Sboro Objects due to loss of football pitches
Sophie Chatfield Sboro Preserve RVH for future generations
Sarah Clark Cranbrook* RVH should be renovated
Jeremy Clarke Sboro RVH should be restored as part of hub
Charmain Clissold-Jones T Wells Hub is shoddy design
Ms Dominique Clothier Sboro New modern hub will accelerate decline of Sboro
Mrs Katrina Clucas Sboro Hub is out of character of Sboro buildings
John Clucas Sboro Hub is severely detrimental to local area
John Cole Ramsgate RVH is part of rich architectural tradition
Alastair Collie Sboro Hub is not promised “state of the art” theatre
Dr Arthur Cottingham Groombridge* Hub is crazy thinking
Mrs Wil Crittenden Sboro Hub looks like sea front kiosk
Robert Darling T Wells RVH is an historic building
Angela Dewar Sboro Ugly hub design is extremely distressing
Michael Di Palma T Wells Losing 15% of playing fields not acceptable
Mrs Keren Dibbens-Wyatt Sboro Not enough consultation on library
Jane Dury Sboro Hub building is totally inappropriate
Mrs Rona Dury Sboro Hub design is out of character
Brian Dury Sboro Hub is poor design & out of character in town
Brian Dury (Southboro Environmental Action Movement- 477 supporters) Sboro Hub project team have not listened to concerns. There is no state of the art theatre as was promised. Polycarbonate box is awful. Totally inappropriate. Over development on fields.
Ms Adele Ebbage T Wells* Hub does not reflect the character of Sboro – volunteers have offered to maintain RVH
Tony Egan Pembury New hall in the planned hub lacks many key features of existing RVH; hub will be eyesore
Graham Ellis Sboro Lack of parking and loss of soccer pitch
Mrs Lisa Everett T Wells Cheaper to refurbish RVH than build hub
Max Figgett Tun Wells Hub design clumsy; robbing us of soccer pitches
RJ Fitz-Gerald Sboro I despair and it makes me think long and hard about whether I will continue growing my business in Southborough
John Francis Sboro Loss of soccer pitches for children
Gina Franks Speldhurst* Hub hall/theatre is not fit for purpose
Mr Sascha Fromeyer Sboro Hub will worsen existing traffic problems
Mrs Katharine Fromeyer Sboro Hub would encourage anti-social behaviour
Ian Gavin Sboro Planning process has not been transparent
Hannah Glenville Sboro Will cast shadows over my garden
Matthew Glenville Sboro Traffic problems due to 69 housing units
Sarah Glover Devon* RVH is a fantastic place to perform as I did
Mrs Shelly Goldring Soaks Hub design not in keeping
Lynn Green Sboro Don’t think Sboro needs a theatre
Rhiannon Grundy Sboro Historic theatre cannot be simply demolished
Ken Hampton Sboro Hub theatre has not enough facilities
Brian Hampton Sboro Hub is not a “state of the art” theatre
Mrs E Harris T Wells RVH is an historical jewel
Philip Harris Sboro Loss of parking for allotment holders
Miss Carys Hatcher Sboro Hub is overdevelopment will be an eyesore
Ms Cheryl Hatcher Sboro New housing will overlook my home
Ms Liz Hatherell Sboro Hub is hideously ugly & out of keeping
Wiz Haynes Sboro Noone trusts the council
Anya Heilpern Sboro Hub is incompatible with planning policy EN1 which demands respect for “context of site”
Andy Hennah Sboro Hub is not in keeping with Sboro architecture
Tabitha Hennah Sboro Designs not in keeping with vicinity
Adam Henry Sboro Loss of two 7-side & 11-side soccer pitches
Cllr Diane Hill (Labour) Sboro I was elected to Borough Council in May with 52% of vote after I campaigned to keep RVH
Derek Holland Mayfield* “superb theare” will be lost
Lucy Ireland Sboro RVH is last heritage building on London Road
Paul Isaacs Kent Why lose following of RVH?
Lucy Jarrett Pembury The proscenium arch in RVH is very rare – dreams have been realised within walls of RVH
Trevor Jary Surrey Historical sacrilege & loss to young people
Anna Jones Sboro Refurbishing existing RVH is far better
Sarah Jones Sboro As professional access consultant, plans have poorly written Design & Access Statement
Mrs Susie Joyce W Malling* Hub is a monster that sounds vicious & cruel
Tun Wells Labour Party T Wells Represents 800 members in TW constituency – Hub has little beauty & is not fit for purpose
Southboro & High Brooms Labour Party (100 members) Sboro RVH is town heritage building and should be renovated and modernised sympathetically
Dinah Lampitt Battle* RVH is a magnificent building
Dave Leech T Wells RVH should be restored not destroyed
Jacky Leman Matfield Hub is totally out of character for Sboro
Joanna Lewin T Wells Save the RVH
Alain Lewis Sboro Modernising RVH is cheaper than new build
Peter Lewtas T Wells Hub is cultural vandalism – RVH is historic
William MacDougal Sboro Poor quality hub – theatre design faulty
John Manthorpe Uckfield RVH should be cherished
Coral Martin Sboro My sons play football at Ridgewaye fields
Miss Eloise Martin Sboro Wants to keep library & beautiful historic RVH
Ms Claire Martin Sboro Hub fills me with dread – restore RVH instead
Ross McPherson Staplehurst* Reconsider this preposterous plan
Miss Catherine Meade Sboro Hub design is completely out of keeping
Richard Millett Hildenboro Hub makes me question my decision to move to Sboro – after BREXIT, TWEXIT moment?
Melanie Morris Sboro Hub will be an embarrassment to us all
Mrs Lindsey Morris Tonbridge RVH is much loved & historic building
Cllr Graham Munn (Labour) Sboro Polycarbonate cladding will look shoddy –bats live around buildings to be demolished
Merlyn Neve Sboro RVH could be refurbished and modernised
Paul Newton Sboro Loss of football pitches and green space
Will Northcote Sboro Loss of 3 soccer pitches unnecessary – council could instead use funds from sale of Speldhurst allotments – Hub is worst of modern architecture
Enrique Novella Sboro Highly unlikely that hub theatre will work
Eleanor O’Shea Sboro Restore RVH to its original splendour
Dominic Offord Sboro RVH is piece of British cultural history -my child cried when heard council were bulldozing it
Rebecca Offord Sboro Hub will be less economically viable than RVH
Andrew Perkins T Wells Loss of soccer pitches
Kathleen Perkins T Wells Loss of football pitches
Helen Phillimore T Wells Not all can afford the Assembly Hall prices
John Phillimore T Wells This is an historic town – keep history
William Phillimore T Wells Save the RVH
Andrew Phillimore T Wells Enjoyed productions at RVH
David Podbury T Wells Hub design not in keeping
Robert Podbury T Wells Hub design not in keeping, more pollution
Mrs Saffron Prentis Sboro RVH should be restored to former glory
Mrs Eryl Rayner T Wells Hub hall seats at right angles won’t work
David Rayner T Wells As a retired architect I am astonished by the lack of quality in hub plans – should modernise the RVH at much lower cost than a new build
Cllr Jason Reeves (Labour) Sboro RVH has local heritage & cultural value
Mrs Mary Richards Sboro Unacceptable to lose the green space
Douglas Richards Sboro I totally object due to loss of green space
Alan Round T Wells Proposed Hub does not respect character of town RVH clearly has local historic interest
Mrs Holly Rowden Sboro Historic building being replaced by monstrosity
Nick Shaw Stonegate* RVH is a unique facility for artist & audience
Mrs Marion Short Sboro RVH is much loved – hub is not theatre
Matt Spink Sboro Will have houses built behind my home
Annette Stevens Tonbridge* Pse don’t knock down lovely little theatre
Chris Steward Sboro Hub more suited to an airport terminal
Mandy Strong T Wells Please don’t known down RVH
Tom Sullivan T Wells Loss of football pitches & smaller pavilion
Donna Swallow Sboro Hub not an environmental design & pollution
Michael Swallow Sboro Plan designed by a secretive cabal
Andrew Swann (Chairman LAMPS theatre group) T Wells Short sighted and selfish to rob your society of such a unique and historic place as RVH
Michael Taylor Sboro RVH belongs here – it is the town’s hub
Susan Taylor Sboro Introduce new facilities without destroying RVH
Suzanne Terrasse Sboro Demolishing RVH for a hall is ludicrous
Andy Thomson T Wells Hub denies chance of children to play sport
Scott Towner Sboro RVH should stay
Miss Marion Townsend Sboro Hub design is truly ghastly out of character
Mrs Norah Traquair T Wells Hub not in keeping with the local area
Susan Trusler Tun Wells Strongly object to loss of playing fields
Sylvia Villa T Wells RVH is small jewel worth saving
Mrs Lisa Ward Sboro Hub will look ridiculous in Sboro
Mat Waugh T Wells Town square is unconvincing
Hugo Webber Sboro Preserve RVH, hub contravenes planning policy
Ms Diane Williams Sboro Design of the hub is an “eyesore”
Peter Williamson Sboro RVH is important piece of Sboro heritage. Hub is unfit for purpose & laughable white elephant
Brian Wood Sboro Totally out of keeping with historic character
Anya Wood Sboro Hub will have a detrimental effect on town

Sboro includes High Brooms;

*comment indicates they still use or have used Southbrough facilities

(Con) or (Labour) means they have been elected to Southborough Town, Tunbridge Wells Borough or Kent County Council.

Full comments at:




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