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Green plans win council backing

SOLAR farms and wind turbines could soon be springing up around Maidstone as part of the borough council’s new planning policy for the future. New rules on renewable and low carbon energy schemes are among development strategies that have been adopted as part of the council’s plans for the future of the bor- ough over the next 20 years. The core strategy is designed to control

the type and design of developments throughout the borough and protect valued countryside as well as outline the sites ear- marked for potential development. Cabinet members approved 14 develop-

ment management policies, which set high standards of design for the town centre and other parts of the borough, in the first tranche of core strategy policies to be con- sidered. They included criteria around the princi- ples of good design for residential and eco-

nomic development, and open spaces; sus- tainable design standards; guidance on the look of shop fronts and shopping areas; and requirements on residential extensions, conversions and redevelopment. Two new policies whichwere also put be-

fore members, respond to emerging plan- ning issues identified by the planning, transport and development overview and scrutiny committee and council officers. Policy DM8 addresses non-conforming

uses in the borough and has been included to shore up policy around determining planning applications for activities that may impact negatively on residential amenity, landscape or ecology because of noise, noxious odours or increased traffic, particularly in rural areas. Officers were due to present the next

group of policies, which will deal with de- velopment in the countryside, economic development, the town centre and urban

Club celebrates 40 years

THE Probus Club of Maidstone celebrated its 40th anniversary with a lunch at Bearsted Golf Club. As the club was originally founded by the Maid-

stone Rotary Club, the Rotary president Colin Trelfer and his wife were the guests of honour. In his after-lunch speech, Mr Trelfer spoke about

his research into the origins of Probus in the mid 1960s as a vehicle for retiring Rotarians to con- tinue to remain in fellowship. The name Probuswas derived from the first three

letters of the words PROfessional and BUSiness, and also reflects the Latin for “probity”. The club meets on the first and third Monday mornings of each month. For details of member-

ship, call the honorary secretary Ed Cooksey on 01622 631371. Probus chairman John Stockham (left) is pictured with Rotary president Colin Trelfer.

areas, and affordable housing, to the overview and scrutiny committee on No- vember 19 and subsequently to the cabinet on December 4. A council spokesman said: “With further

work required to finalise housing need and supply, it is not possible at this time to ac- curately determine housing targets, the spa- tial distribution of development and land allocations. “As a result policies will be brought to overview and scrutiny committee and cab- inet in groups over the next four months.” The council is keen to encourage low car-

bon energy schemes in rural communities in the borough, but the guidelines state schemes must be appropriately sited and not conflict with landscape character or ex- isting uses. Developers will also need to demonstrate

they have taken into account noise, visual and heritage impact.

Cycles stolen CYCLE thieves have struck again outside the Chequers pub in Laddingford. They stole a bike from the

back of a vehicle parked out- side the pub. The offender rode off on the bike along the track to the side of the pub, which comes out on GravellyWays. This is the second time such

an incident has occurred in six weeks. Anyone with informa- tion is asked to contact com- munity officer NicolaMorris or call 101.

An open invitation awaits you at this charming village tea room, cocooned amongst a wealth of shabby chic home wares & gifts.

Amazing choice of unique christmas gifts from local artists, suppliers and craftsmen

Stockists of Annie Sloan paints. Painting courses available.

A truly eclectic, vintage shopping emporium

Book your vintage afternoon tea (Sundays)

Georgian House, Warmlake Road, Chart Sutton ME17 3RP 01622 844590

You can e-mail the Downs Mail — South 19

Dotty Diva

Bev Clarke • Annie Sloane Old Cow Shed Mamahoney • LT Art Miss Vintage Liberty

P Abson • Crafted by Joy Just Lovely

Carlys Crafty Bits All things Beautiful

Betty Bee

Ali Baba • Edmed Fires Phils Fires • Little Gems Kate Neame Prints Love Hearts

Queen of hearts A Native Hundred Chris Cards Anna Lopez

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