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Thanet Coast and Sandwich Bay SPA Mitigation and Monitoring Strategy

Planning Application Obligations for Residential Development within the Thanet Coast and Sandwich Bay Special Protection Area (SPA) Zone of Influence. 

For all new residential development sited within 9km of the Thanet Coast and Sandwich Bay Special Protection Area (SPA), Dover District Council collects financial contributions towards monitoring and mitigation measures outlined in the SPA Strategic Access Management and Monitoring (SAMM) plan. The strategy aims to mitigate the potential in-combination impacts of new housing development and resulting recreation pressure on the SPA.

 The Council may only agree to a proposed residential development if it knows that it will not have an adverse impact on the integrity of the protected sites. The only methodology recognised by Natural England to demonstrate that development will have no adverse impact upon the protected sites is to mitigate the established impact through the SAMM which requires contributions to fund the implementation of the strategy. The precise location of the 9km Zone of Influence, within which contributions are collected these can be viewed in the link to the map below as well as on the Local Plan Policies Map. 

To secure the contribution, the Council will require the submission of a unilateral undertaking under Section 106 of the Planning Act. This will bind the land within relevant grants of planning permission to ensure that the proposed development does not have an unacceptable impact on the protected sites.

The Council has produced a draft unilateral undertaking for use for planning applications where the creation of one or more residential units is proposed and where the SAMM contribution is the only contribution required (usually 1-9 units). For larger residential developments (usually 10 units or more), the contribution will still be sought although it will likely be one of several contributions required as part of a bilateral or multilateral S.106 agreement. The draft agreement (for smaller scale residential proposals) is available below:

The tariff for the SAMM must be calculated as per the table below:

Development type

Tariff per dwelling

1 bedroom unit


2 bedroom unit


3 bedroom unit


4+ bedroom unit



Update note April 2023: Following a review of the costs of proposed mitigation set out in the SAMM, the tariff has been updated from that originally published in October 2022.


The correct total figure of contribution in relation to your development must be entered into the unilateral undertaking. For outline applications the contribution will be determined at the reserved matters stage.

Because planning obligations run with the land, all persons with an interest in the land (including freeholders, leaseholders and mortgagees) must be identified and included as parties to the deed to ensure that the Council can have confidence that the provisions of the obligation will be effective.

We strongly advise that independent legal advice is taken before entering into a planning obligation. 

Due to the government mandated determination deadlines for planning applications, a fully completed electronic copy of the draft unilateral undertaking is required within 28 days of the valid date of the application. If we do not receive a draft unilateral undertaking for the development by this date, then the Council will be minded to refuse the application as it will be unable to evidence compliance with regulation 63 of the Habitats Regulations 2017.

The responsibility to ensure this deed is correct rests with the applicant and their advisors.

Once the draft has been checked by the Council, it will confirm whether the draft is approved and then, if approved, will require the submission of an original signed version of the approved unilateral undertaking.

If the Council is minded to refuse the application, we will not seek a completed signed unilateral undertaking from you.

Land Registry Documents

The Council will require an up-to-date copy of the HM Land Registry official copy of register of title and the accompanying plan

Further guidance on how to obtain the title register and plan is available here:


Other Information

Please note that it is your responsibility to ensure that the Deed has been properly completed and executed. If it has not, the Deed will not be accepted and you will be required to re-execute the Deed and this will cause delay and may result in your application being refused.

The Council cannot accept payment for any obligations prior to the acceptance of the Unilateral Undertaking and the granting of the associated planning permission.

The Council will require a payment of £250 (to be paid with the SAMM contribution) for each unilateral undertaking as a contribution towards its legal costs incurred in checking, making any necessary amendments to and registering the planning obligation as a local land charge.

The Council will require its costs of monitoring the compliance of the development with the terms of the undertaking to be paid. The monitoring costs are £236 per undertaking and are to be paid at the same time as the SAMM contribution and the legal costs.