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FREE Maidstone Town | Maidstone East | Maidstone South | Malling Alex gets on his bike

A SNODLAND barber’s quest for new business after the opening of the new bridge across the Medway landed him in a lather with a parish council. Alex Mackintosh turned to pedal power to promote his

High Street shop, Alexander’s, to potential customers in the villages on the other side of the river. After he painted an old bike and chained it up in the cen-

tre of Burham, new clients began to take notice. But so did the parish council, who asked him to remove it. Alex said: “This is the first time I have been asked to move

it. I try to put it where it’s not in the way. I was happy to move it when the council said itwas on private property.”  Turn to pages 18 and 19 for a full report and pictures of the new bridge opening.

Homes scheme cut as Green Belt extended

THOUSANDS of new homes which could have seen Kings Hill and East Malling merge into a “supertown” have been wiped off the drawing board.

Residents and councillors were concerned that a 400-acre stretch of farmland and orchards called Broad- water Farm,was suggested as a pos- sible site for 4,000 homes during the early stages of Tonbridge and Malling’s emerging Local Plan. The area was proposed by Kings

Hill developer Liberty Property Trust in the borough’s call for sites which resulted in plots coming for- ward for 20,000 homes. But after evaluation by planning officers drawing up the council’s draft plan, TheWay Forward, the number was reduced to 10,000 with about 900 at Broadwater Farm. East Malling and Larkfield Parish Council chairman DavidThornewell welcomed the reduction and the suggested extension of the Green Belt to theWest Malling by-pass, but said it did not go far enough.

Cllr David Thornewell and protestors gather at Larkfield library He said: “This is an officers’ draft

and there is nothing to stop Liberty coming back and renewing their proposals.” Hesaid that Kings Hillwas devel-

oped on the basis it would be a sep- arate community, adding: “Iamsure that none of the other villages want to be absorbed into a vast urban sprawl.”

About 50 people joined a protest

walk led by Cllr Thornewell around the area earmarked for houses. An 80-page document was pub-

lished by the council on September 30, at the start of eightweeks of pub- lic consultation. The council is look- ing to find sites for 13,920 new homes by 2031, of which 7,457 have been identified.


01622 690290 YOUR LOCAL PROPERTY EXPERT 23 Pudding Lane • Maidstone • Kent

PEOPLE have until Friday, November 25, to give their views on the draft plan. View the documents at localplan, at the borough council’s offices at Kings Hill, or at any library in the borough.

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October 2016 No. 234 News Toxic algae warning

DOG owners are being warned to avoid Leybourne Lakes after tests showed the presence of toxic algae.

3 George’s golf goal

SELF-taught golf ace George Young, 15, is aiming for an England cap.

4 Church centre vow

THE new owner of West Malling’s church centre will be open about building works. 5

Charlie Girling shield 6

MAPLESDEN Noakes prize for sport in memory of pupil who died this year.

Reward for Bobby

A DOG owner has offered £300 for the return of her beloved terrier.

Ukip fraud denial

AN EX-Ukip MEP denies she knew of an expenses scam run by an aide.

Obituaries Comment

17 30 32

Parish Councils 40-41 Crime Reports 41

FENCING was damaged at a property in East Malling; intrud- ers were disturbed by an alarm going off during a house break-in in Snodland; a cabin cruiser on a silver trailer was taken from a driveway in East Mallling; four tyres on a VW Golf were punc- tured in Wateringbury.

SNODLAND library is to be given a major refurbishment - see Town Talk in this month’s Downs Mail. The bi-monthly independent magazine is dedi- cated to Snodland and Halling residents.

Town Talk 14

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