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downsmail.co.uk Maidstone South Edition


Maidstone & Malling’s No. 1 newspaper


December 2016


Estate petition calls for a motorway link


APETITION calling for a relief road is to be compiled by Shepway residents in a bid to stop its narrow lanes being used as rat-runs by lorries.


Local people have noticed a sharp increase in the number of HGVs, trucks and cars using the area to avoid the clogged Sutton Road and Willington Street. With house-building on the in-


crease and plans for 1,300 new homes near Langley likely to go ahead, they fear there will be even more pressure on the area. A900-signature petitionwas gath-


ered before the Shepway south by- election in favour of a relief road to help Maidstone’s traffic woes. Now residents in Shepway north


are to be given the opportunity to put their names to a similar list. Conservative Cllr Marion Ring (pictured), a Shepway resident of 30 years and life-long Maidstone resi-


dent, says the traffic issues have be- come much worse of late. The Westmorland Road resident


said: “We’re getting loads of lorries coming down this way.


“This es-


tate was built for families, it was never built as a major route and cer- tainly for


the number and size of vehicles we’re seeing cut through here. “We have got to the point now thatwe won’t let go. There has got to


be some solution.” Cllr Ring added: “I remember that


you could jump on the bus and it would take about 15 minutes to get into the centre of Maidstone. These days, with all the traffic, it takes about 45 minutes. The by-pass or re- lief road is now critical.” Cllr David Burton, the borough council’s head of planning, said that a by-pass in the south of the town linking to the motorway is the most “logical piece of infrastructure” to help the borough cope with its traf- fic.


He told Downs Mail: “I think we


are in a much better position to see the delivery sooner rather than later.” See pages 36&37


Scan takes years off town’s mummy


THE face of Maidstone’s 2,700-year-old mummy, Ta- Kush, has been brought to life with the help of a re- vealing body scan.


The initial findings by radiologists at KIMS Hos- pital in Maidstone may finally reveal her age, sug- gesting that she may have been in her 20s when she died, not 14 as previously thought. The scan also showed a fracture in one of Ta Kush’s vertebrae, possibly caused by a fall. The results will be examined by international specialists as part of a Lottery-funded project in- volving Maidstone Museum, which has been the mummy’s home for many years.


More research will now be carried out with John Moore’s University in Liverpool to form a new ex- hibition when the mummy goes back on display at the museum next summer.


Barracks to shut


01622 690290 YOUR LOCAL PROPERTY EXPERT


maidstone@martinco.com 23 Pudding Lane • Maidstone • Kent


MAIDSTONE’S Invicta Park Bar- racks is to shut its doors, ending more than two centuries of military history in the county town. The decision was announced by defence secretary Sir Michael Fallon.


8


FREE No. 236


News Drivers needed


A HOMELESS charity has a new furniture store and now needs volunteer van drivers to deliver large loads.


3 ‘Rogue trader’ denial


THE Maidstone firm featured in BBC’s Watchdog disputes pressure-selling techniques.


Drugs in freezer


A DRUG dealer was found to have amphetamines hidden in his freezer. 8


Morrisons relaunch


MORRISONS is set to unveil its extension and new prod- uct ranges next month.


MAIDSTONE workers earn an average of more than £29,000 a year – study.


18 Middle of pay league 18


Ukip delays selection 19


UKIP has postponed selecting county council candi- dates by a month.


Parish Councils 32


THE speed of vehicles through areas of Tovil will be brought to the attention of Kent Highways; there have been reports of ducks killed on a pond in Loose; a resident has asked for signs on the parish field in Barming to remind dog owners they must clear up after their pets.


Crime Reports 32


A BLUE and white Suzuki 750 motorcycle was stolen from an address in Fant; a red Apollo BMX bike was taken from school grounds in Boughton Lane; a missile was thrown at a property, causing damage to it, in Sevington Park.


Obituaries 34 Comment 46 - 47 01622 880840 5 


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