Understanding Planning Policy of Dungeness

This week, I want to expand my knowledge on the planning framework and conservation guidelines imposed on Dungeness, to form the basis of my exploration of transient/deployable structures. Dungeness is governed by the Shepway District Council which has laid out planning/building regulations under Article 4 direction, emphasis on the preservation of the character.

This is an excerpt from the report :

‘Usually settlements have a framework from their inception which includes a main street and other track ways, with boundaries delineated in some way or another. All these rules were broken a Dungeness as the inhabitants made their own tracks… moving from place to place at will. The dwellings had no boundaries as the beach was valueless regarding crops etc. so the whole hamlet was (theoretically) mobile. When the permanent road was in place movement forward (ie towards the sea) with the houses halted so what can be seen now is a frozen mobile settlement.

Some architectural qualities that contribute to the special character :


Current controls to preserve Dungeness’ character and natural environment:

  • no new buildings to be built on new plot of land
  • new buildings should be built on existing footprint only to replace existing buildings
  • prohibit further building and decking extension
  • planning permission needed to mark out territory with fences and gardens
  • new materials to match those existing in form, color and detail
  • extension not taller than existing building

In terms of lease, the estate, in succession to British Rail allowed individual self-building on very short lease, now replaced by long leases, though it not known how many residents have taken up the offer. After the 1947 Town planning act came into force, developments acquire lawful status on account of the 4 year rule. —- To check with the warden. It will be interesting to test the viability of self-build deployable homes for various periods of time (eg: a couple on vacation for a week, an artist on road trip for a few hours, a group of students on field trip for a day)

In Romania, I will continue my pinhole experiments with a new ‘reel-to-reel’ camera that allows more pictures to be taken especially long night exposures. I was inspired by this homemade potato pinhole camera. Maybe I can create a camera out of the objects I collected from Dungeness.

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