Contact your Parish Council

Communities, Housing & Environment

5th January 2021


MBC Owned G&T Sites Investment Proposal


Final Decision-Maker

Communities, Housing & Environment

Lead Head of Service

John Foster, Head of Regeneration & Place

Lead Officer and Report Author

Alison Elliott, Housing Development Officer


Public report.


Wards affected

Water Lane – Headcorn Ward

Stilebridge - Marden & Yalding



Executive Summary

The two mobile home sites owned by Maidstone Borough Council and managed by Kent County Council, Water Lane and Stilebridge require significant investment. 

The proposed works are set out in this report.


Purpose of Report

To inform Committee of the proposed schedule of works to enable the refurbishment of the two Council-owned mobile home sites.

To seek approval from Committee to enter into necessary contracts and other agreement to enable works to take place.



This report makes the following recommendations to this Committee:

1.   That CHE Committee agree to the planned works at the Water Lane and Stilebridge mobile home sites.

2.   That the Director of Regeneration & Place is given delegated authority to enter into the necessary contracts and other agreements to enable works to take place.






Community, Housing & Environment Committee

5th Jan 2021

MBC Owned G&T Sites Investment Proposal







Impact on Corporate Priorities

The proposals support the Homes and Community priority and the outcome “Existing housing is safe, desirable and promotes

good health and well-being”


Accepting the recommendations will materially improve the Council’s ability to achieve the above outcome.  The reasons other choices will be less effective is set out in section 2.

Head of Regeneration & Place

Cross Cutting Objectives

The four cross-cutting objectives are:


·         Heritage is Respected

·         Health Inequalities are Addressed and Reduced

·         Deprivation and Social Mobility is Improved

·         Biodiversity and Environmental Sustainability is respected


The report supports the achievements of the cross-cutting objectives by providing much needed improvements to the Council owned G&T sites.

Head of Regeneration & Place

Risk Management

Already covered in the risk section

Head of Regeneration & Place


Capital programme proposals to be submitted to Policy and Resources Committee on 20th January 2021 will incorporate a budget for the works described in this report.  As with all significant capital works, effective project management and regular monitoring during the course of the project will be required to ensure that it remains within budget.

Section 151 Officer & Finance Team


We will need access to external expertise to deliver the works.

Head of Regeneration & Place


The Council has a general power of competence pursuant to Section 1 of the Localism Act 2011 which enables it to do anything that individuals generally may do. 


The Local Government Act 1972 (LGA 1972) section 111(1) empowers a local authority to do anything (whether or not involving the expenditure, borrowing or lending of money or the acquisition or disposal of any property or rights) which is calculated to facilitate, or is conducive or incidental to the discharge of any of their functions.

Acting on the recommendations is within the Council’s powers as set out in the above statutory provisions.


The procurement processes referred to in this report should be in accordance with the Council’s Contract Procedure Rules and the Public Contract Regulations 2015.

All necessary legal documentation arising from the recommendations in this report should be approved by Legal Services before completion.

Team Leader, Contentious, and Commissioning, Legal Team

Privacy and Data Protection

There is no direct impact resulting from the recommendations in the report.


Policy and Information Team


An equalities impact assessment will be completed to consider the impact of the programme on protected characteristics and will outline any mitigating measures taken.

Equalities and Corporate Policy Officer

Public Health



Poor housing and amenity facilities have detrimental impacts on health and wellbeing.  The refurbishment programme will address the current poor conditions on both sites.

Public Health Officer

Crime and Disorder

The recommendation will have no negative impact on Crime and Disorder.

Head of Regeneration & Place


On accepting the recommendations, the Council will follow a procurement exercise for the appointment of the Contractor to carry out the works.  We will complete this exercise in line with financial procedure rules.

Head of Regeneration & Place & Section 151 Officer





2.1     The Council owns two public mobile homes sites at Water Lane (in the Staplehurst Ward) consisting of 14 plots and Stilebridge (in the Marden & Yalding Ward) consisting of 18 plots.  Both of the sites are currently managed by KCC.


2.2     Only limited investment has been made on these sites for quite some time, meaning that significant expenditure is now required to bring the sites up to a modern standard. 


2.3     Following an asset review of the site and resident consultation, there have been various areas of condition shortfall identified:

·      The amenity blocks.

·      The lack of individual metering for water and electrical supplies.

·      Site signage.

·      Poor condition of communal road and street lighting.


2.4     Earlier this year a specialist consultant was appointed to carry out surveys of each site and provide a cost estimate for the above-mentioned works.  They identified the following:


Amenity Blocks

2.5     On both sites, each plot has its own amenity facility to provide sanitary and wash facilities.  These brick built back-to-back blocks each serve two plots.


2.6     Due to lack of investment, age and nature of construction, the blocks at Water Lane need to be replaced.   However, the amenity blocks at Stilebridge can be refurbished.


Electricity Supply

2.7     There are currently no individual meters as such, residents do not have individual accounts directly with the supplier.  MBC is liable for the total cost, which is then recovered by way of electricity cards purchased by each resident.


2.8     The system is an administrative burden to operate and does not permit each tenant to have a choice as to their supplier. Historically, MBC does not recover the whole cost of the electricity provided through the sale of the cards.


2.9     Through new cabling, residents will be able to choose their supplier, have individual meters and billing that more accurately accords with their actual usage.


Water Supply

2.10  As with the electrical meters above, the current situation is unsatisfactory.  The proposed works will introduce individual meters for each resident, to properly apportion usage and invoice residents accordingly.


2.11  The meters will remain the property of MBC rather than the water company. It has been reflected in the new management agreement that KCC will be responsible to read the meters on a regular basis.


Road Surfaces

2.12  The communal road areas on both sites require some remedial work.


Communal Lighting

2.13  The survey noted that not all lighting columns on the sites are in working order.  It is proposed to refurbish the columns where possible and replace the lighting with more energy efficient equipment which will be therefore at reduced running costs.



2.14  There is currently a significant lack of signage to the sites.  It is proposed to introduce road signage to identify each site.


Project Programme

2.15  It has been decided that Officers in the Regeneration and Economic Development team should lead this project due to their remit of project managing other housing capital projects.


2.16  Below shows an indicative project programme:




Planning application submitted

November 2020

Tender for Contractor

December 2020

Tender Deadline

January 2021

Planning granted

February 2021

Evaluations of tender submissions

February 2021

Appoint Contractor

March 2021

Start of Site

April 2021


August 2021


Project Finances

2.17 The indicative budget for the proposed works is £1m. Officers are currently in the process of a tender exercise to establish contractors’ fees.  It should be noted that this process is guided by the tender requirements and the overall requirement for the project to deliver value for money rather than the budget.  An actual cost will be known early next year.





3.1     Option 1. The Council could decide to do nothing, but this is not recommended as the Council would then not meet its landlord obligations. 


3.2     Option 2. The Council could decide to choose to undertake some of the work as outlined.  However, taking this approach will only delay inevitable work. 


3.3     Option 3.  The Council could decide to undertake all the work as outlined, to bring both sites into a lettable standard.






4.1     Option 3 is recommended.  This will address the condition shortfalls identified and provide residents with the facilities that a modern public-owned, mobile homes site should provide.




5.       RISK

5.1    The following risks and mitigations have been identified:




Planning not achieved

Officers and Employers Agent have worked closely with Planning colleagues.  Planners advice has been incorporated into designs before planning submission.


Asbestos removal

Officers and Employers Agent will ensure that a qualified and competent removal expert is appointed.  A detailed proposal will be included within the construction phase plan.


Performance of contractors

Officers and Employers Agent will pro-actively manage suppliers and update the project team on status of supply chain procurement and performance




6.1     Ward Councillors have been notified of the proposed new scheme designs.





7.1     The agreed programme of works will be communicated to the KCC Team managing both sites and to the residents.  Due to the scale of the works required, there will inevitably be some disruption to residents.





·        N/A





9.1  N/A