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Thurnham Parish News

Fears over housing review

COUNCILLORS are concerned they will be have to accept new development in the parish if the number of houses in Maidstone’s Core Strategy is significantly increased. Borough councillor Nick de

Meetings normally held on the third Monday of each month at the Marriott Tudor Park Hotel. Public welcome.

CHAIRMAN:Daniel Skinner CLERK: Sherrie Babington 01634 867173

Fire hydrants COUNCIL clerk Sherrie Babington said an opportunity had arisen for the council to take responsibility for fire hy- drants in the parish. Cllr Skinner said it seemed sensible for councillors to know where hydrants were. Cllr John Horne said the matter had arisen following a house fire in Grafty Green, where Kent Fire and Rescue Service had to bring in a water tender to fight the flames. Cllr Horne and Cllr Michael

Stark both said the council should not take on responsibil- ity for the fire hydrants.

Wiggondene said the number of homes Maidstone Council has to commit to building couldrisefrom10,080toas many as 15,000, due to changes in government policy. Cllr Denham called the 15,000 a “mythical figure” and

said the council would never build that many houses in the current economic climate. A parishioner at themeeting said it was almost certain any extra housing would be built along the M20 corridor, which would include Thurnham. Cllr John Horne slammed Maid- stone Council’s Core Strategy consultation and asked for the parish council to be kept in- formed from now on, so a higher housing figure was not suddenly sprung on them.

Three parishes work together CHAIRMAN Cllr Daniel Skinner met the chairmen of Detling and Stockbury parish councils at The Harrow in Stockbury. They talked aboutworking together in the future and agreed they

had a shared interest in Detling Aerodrome and industrial estate, particularly regarding proposals to expand the waste recycling site. Cllr Skinner said the trio felt the A249 Action Group, set up to campaign for safety improvements,was not currently needed. KCC had no money for the two roundabouts the group requested – in- stead of gaps in the dual carriageway between the Stockbury round- about and junction 7 of the M20 – so the chairmen felt there was no point continuing the group as a separate entity. Cllr John Horne did not think it was a good idea to disband the ac-

tion group, which has the support of MP for Faversham and Mid Kent, Hugh Robertson, but suggested instead letting it lie dormant.

Future of blocked lay-by discussed COUNCILLOR Ted Denham raised the issue of the A249 layby, which was closed in 2005 following anti-social behaviour. Cllr Denham suggested re-opening the layby as he believed trucks

were parking where they shouldn’t be. Cllr John Horne said if the council provided a lay-by it would need to provide toilets and make sure food was available.

Land sold to

mystery buyer APIECE of land off Caring Lane was sold at auction for £60,000. Cllr Peter Waite attended the auction with “several thousand pounds” raised by residents who hoped to buy the land for community use, but hewas sig- nificantly outbid. The acre-and-a-quarter of

land, bought by a man the councillor did not recognise, was previously used for grazing but is not used at the moment. Cllr Waite said the land would not be suitable for develop- ment, due to poor access. Cllr Ted Denham asked what would stop the new buyer “chopping all the trees down tomorrow”? Cllr Waite said there should

be a 20-day period before any work took place as the contract of sale would be completed at that time.

Councillors agreed to monitor the situation.

Signs out of order INTERACTIVE signs telling drivers to slow down on Ware Street were said not to be working. Cllr Denham and other mem-

bers said they had observed ve- hicles travelling past the signs faster than the 30mph limit but they had not activated them.

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