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downsmail.co.uk MP tackles lorry ‘fly-parking’


MID Kent MP Helen Whately is calling on the government to act over the “annoying and dangerous” scourge of lorries parking illegally in Maidstone and surrounding villages. Local people are fed up with in-


convenience, noise, litter and mess left behind by truckers – many of them foreign – using public spaces to park up.


In a House of Commons de- bate she had called, Mrs Whately urged the Department of Transport to take action over HGVs parking in inappropri- ate places.


She also asked roads minister


John Hayes to make the new lorry area planned for Stanford west available for overnight parking – not just when Operation Stack is in force. Mr Hayes said a “fresh look”


was needed at lorry parking and committed to undertake a study of the provision of lorry parking spaces across the country.


Driving ban


A DRIVER from Maidstone has been banned from the road and fined more than £1,000 for a series of driving offences. Jason Boreham (32) admitted drink-driving, driving without in- surance and using a vehicle without anMOTcertificate in Maidstone. Boreham, from Bramble Close,


was stopped in his Kia Sportage on January 24. A breath test showed that he had 45mg of alcohol in 100ml of breath. The legal limit is 35. West Kent Magistrates banned


him from driving for three years and fined him £1,050. He must also pay £170 in costs and a £50 victim surcharge.


Soccer signing CHELSEA footballer Kerry Dixon will sign copies of his autobiogra- phy, Up Front, at Lashings sports bar in Maidstone from 7pm on Wednesday, September 28. Dixon will talk about his life on


and off the pitch. The forward, who scored 193 goals in nine years at Chelsea, has previously spoken about drug and gambling problems.


Crash chaos ACRASHbetween a car and a lorry caused traffic jams on theA229 Bish- opsWay in Maidstone on Thursday, September 8. The roadwas partly blocked with


heavy traffic northbound between the A20 at Broadway junction and the White Rabbit roundabout.


22 Maidstone East October 2016 MP Helen Whately is calling for action on illegally-parked lorries


He will also consider improving enforcement and steps to tackle lit- ter on roadsides. Mrs Whately said: “Fly-parking


– when lorries park outside of proper parking areas – is not just annoying, it’s dangerous. The


problem has got steadily worse, and the time has come for a clamp- down.” She cited the death last year of


Susan Mellor (74), from Maidstone, who crashed into a lorry parked on the hard shoulder at Junction 7 of


the M20. Mrs Whately added: “As people


living in my area of Kent know, lorries fill every lay-by, line up on the hard shoulder of slip roads, crawl onto the verges of country lanes and tuck themselves away in housing estates. “None of these places have facil-


ities for drivers, so as well as the problem of huge HGVs parked on the roadside, there’s also littering and fouling of verges and hedges with human waste. “Residents nearby are under- standably upset, and it’s pretty bad for the drivers themselves. “I’m delighted that the minister


has committed to looking into how many more lorry parking spaces are needed and how they can be made available. “Thiswas a really productive de-


bate and I’m confident that fixing fly-parking is now firmly on the Department of Transport’s to-do list.”


£1.2m spent on blitzing potholes


AN incredible 997 potholes have had to be filled on the county’s roads since June, according to Kent County Council. The highways authority says it


has spent £1.2m patching craters on Kent roads, alongside 22.4 miles of larger road repairs. The council says it will spend an


extra £3 million on pothole repairs this year, with £1.4 million coming from the Government. KCC says it has aimed to make permanent repairs by cutting a small section of the road around the hole, and filling it with Tarmac, something that has cost more than £1.2 million since June.


It also says pothole repairs, where possible, will then be protected by “surface dressing the whole road in the near future”.


Dismay at ducks’ death


A PARISH council chairman has appealed for information after wild birds were killed in a sickening at- tack at a village duck pond. Cllr Vianne Gibbons, of Loose, described the shocking devastation at Brooks Field pond, caused by “a group of men dressed in camou- flage outfits with dogs.” In a recent edition of the parish council’s latest newsletter, Loose Views, she said that the men threw rocks and stones at the bulrushes. It said: “As the ducks and their chicks came out of the bulrushes,


the men set their dogs on them, killing a vast amount. It appears there is possibly only one mallard and one moorhen with chicks left.” She said: “I was appalled and shocked to hear this news. The ducks have always been a lovely feature in Loose. For them to be killed in thisway is very shocking.” The millpond is looked after by volunteers after being taken over with the adjacent Brooks Field in 2000 by the parish council. Kent police said they could not trace a report of the incident.


It has called on the members of


the public to report any potholes on- line at www.kent.gov.uk/pothole- blitz.


Charity ball


A CHARITY Winter Ball is being held at the Tudor Park Hotel near Maidstone in aid of Action on Hearing Loss on No- vember 19. Adrinks reception will be fol-


lowed by a three-course meal, auction and raffle. There will be live music from Sound Casters and a disco until midnight. Tickets cost £50 per person for


tables of 10. Telephone 07801 971692 or send an email to AOHLBIG3@gmail.com.


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