Swale councillors and residents are angry after an independent planning inspector gave the green light to the controversial housing development on Seager Road.
Housing association Moat Homes had received permission to build 35 new homes in 2011 on land off Seager Road. Neighbours soon noticed, however, that the new buildings were higher than permitted and overlooked their back gardens.
The planning committee rejected both applications made by Moat Homes for retrospective planning permission. Angry councillors ordered the whole estate to be knocked down within six months, but the housing association appealed and in May planning inspector Chris Preston decided that the homes should be allowed to stay.
Mr Preston conceded that the design and height of the estate diverged significantly from the approved plans and thus represented an unauthorised development, but stated that if such developments met planning terms, planning permission should be granted.
The inspector did insist that no one should be allowed to move in until water sewage drains had been completed and approved by the council.
Sue Holmes, a lead campaigner against the development, expressed anger, stating that Moat Homes was “out of order” to build without proper planning permission.