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DownsMail In touch with your parish


the new terms of the Localism Act. Mr Bowden said the plans did not belong to the council, but to the people living in the parish concerned. Chairman Mike Bedwell re- ported on the increase in fly- tipping around the village, which he said was directly at- tributable to the changes at Tovil tip. Dr Bauer was also con- cerned, and it was suggested Katrine be asked to publish an article on the subject in the parish magazine. At the fete planning meeting,


the poor state of the surface at the entrance to the Lance Me- morial Field was raised, and the chairman proposed buying a ton of topsoil, and possibly a grass mat and seed. This was agreed, and it was proposed to get a working party together to provide the labour. Cllr Bedwell was concerned


about the proposed abolition of the concurrent services grant,a sum of about £6,000 per year. The new scheme would leave the council very short of funds. The clerk reported that under


the new parish services scheme, the only money to be granted would be £1,000 for grass cutting. The clerk presented the crime report, which showed fewer crimes than during the same pe- riod last year. The clerk asked if members wished to continue sending


Six trees could


go at church SIX trees could be removed as part of works in the churchyard at All Saints’ Church in Upper Street, Hollingbourne. Church warden William


Perry’s planning application, which will be determined by Maidstone Council, requests conservation area consent re- moval of the following:  Lime, 200 years old, as it is growing out of a wall and lean- ing over a neighbouring garage.  Elder clump, 70 years old, obstructing gravestones.  Juniper, 70 years old, as it is close to collapsing due to wind damage.  Ivy, 25 years old, damaging a wall.  Elder cluster, three years old, obstructing gravestones.  Silver birch, 130 years old, as it is dead. Works are also proposed on


12 limes, seven yews, three hol- lies, two leylandii, two privets and other trees, including an ivy and beech. A supporting statement said:


“This proposed work will not only improve the current visual aspect of the churchyard but prevent disease and decay that could lead tomore severe prob- lems at a later date.”


Christmas cards, and this was confirmed. Christmas trees had been arranged for Tanyard and Eyhorne Greens. The clerk asked that some


form of reimbursement bemade to Mrs Gibbs for the cost of Car- ols around the Tree, and this was agreed at £100. The Fields in Trust scheme


was still open and itwas agreed to seek this status for the Lance Memorial Field. The lighting around the pavil-


ion was said to be out of order, and this would be investigated. Cllr Bennett reported a bro-


ken kerb stone outside Tanyard House and opposite 77 Eyhorne Street, which had caused his wife to fall. The clerk was to take action. He also said the new landlord


in the Sugar Loaves was making great efforts and members wel- comed the fact that the pub re- mained a community resource


Leeds Council Lighting work


A REPORT from the lighting contractor was discussed and members agreed to work being undertaken up to £1,300. A parish open day was planned for December 9, to con- sult with parishioners on the budget and other issues. It was agreed to plant daffodil


bulbs along the verges from the church.


Comments had been left on


thewebsite regarding the build- outs. It was suggested they should be more visible at night. The clerk would liaise with KCC.


Maidstone Council had ap- proved plans for an orangery at Park Barn Farm House, Park Barn Road, Broomfield. It was agreed that arrange-


ments should be progressed for the installation of a light outside the pavilion.


Ulcombe Council No crimes


THERE was no reported crime in the parish for October/No- vember. There had been a request for information by neighbouring parishes, Kent Police and KCC regarding Lorry Watch so that lorry drivers delivering to and from local farms could be ad- vised of restricted routes. At the October Police Parish Forum, it was reported that crime was down by 15% in rural areas and anti-social be- haviour by 17%, with 38.7% of all crimes reported being de- tected. It was noted that the response


time for 999 calls in rural areas was 20 minutes, subject to offi- cers being able to arrive at the scene safely. The two main crime types in rural areas were theft (mainly metal and heating oil) and burglaries other than dwellings (sheds/outbuildings).


Assurances were given that


there were currently no plans to change the structure or resources for the operation of PCSOs,de- spite the end of Government ring-fenced funding in 2013. A total of 353 signatures had


been collected in the parish for the concurrent functions peti- tion organised by KALC Maid- stone area committee, which would be presented to Maid- stone Council. Kent Highways had been


asked for an update regarding requests for several new road signs. A request had been made for improvement and cleaning of the road at Knowle Hill. Potholes on Chegworth Road


had been reported, along with the need for the culverts in the village centre to be unblocked and some land drains repaired. The broken carriageway in Crumps Lane and overgrown hedges at the bottom of Knowle Hill and along William Post Lane would be reported. A possible 20mph zone in the village would be discussed at the December parish council meeting. It was agreed to donate £100


to the M20 Noise Action Group to help fund a noise survey of the motorway. A response had been submit-


ted to the KALC Progress on Lo- calism survey.


‘Bomb’ drama CHRISTMAS shoppers were evacuated from aMaidstone su- perstore and car park after a suspect package was detected in the aisles. Bomb experts carried out a controlled explosion at Mor- risons in Sutton Road, before declaring it a hoax. The package had been made to


Club president Doug Baguley cuts the cake, with district governor Stuart Grainger (right) and longest- serving member Peter Hedgeland (left)


Rotary club’s 90th anniversary OVER 100members and guests, including four daughter clubs (Weald, Malling, Riverside, Dawn Patrol), helped the Rotary Club of Maidstone celebrate its 90th anniversary at the Great DanesHotel,Hollingbourne. They heard an inaugural dinner at the Royal Star Hotel, High Street,


Maidstone, in July 1922was followed by presentation of the charter on December 14 to the first president, J Hillier French. The club met fort- nightly at the Carlton Café, High Street, until 1924 when meetings moved to the Royal Star until it closed in 1985. It has met at the Corn- wallis Suite, Tovil, for lunch on Fridays since 1996. The club, with over50members, supports the Maidstone community, especially with funds raised largely from operating car parks at pre- Christmas weekends, waste paper collections and managing Santa’s grotto at The Mall Shopping Centre.


To contact Downs Mail just phone 01622 630330


look like an explosive device, ac- cording to policewho closed the store as the bomb squad cleared up debris from the package, dis- covered at about noon and deto- nated at 3.30pm. Experts sent in a robot device


to check the package and Sut- ton Road was closed for half an hour as a precaution. Shoppers were evacuated while the area was made safe.


Rifle club plan BEARSTED and Thurnham Rifle Club has applied to ex- tend its club house next to the White Horse in The Green, Bearsted. The single-storey building, located in the pub car park, has a small bore shooting range with small attached club house. The proposal would extend


the club house by 10.5 sq m to make a total area of 28.5 sq m. Maidstone Council will deter- mine the planning application.


East 43


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