This page contains a Flash digital edition of a book. Maidstone East Edition Maidstone East Edition

Maidstone & Malling’s No. 1 newspaper

December 2016

FREE No. 236

News Barracks to close

INVICTA Park Barracks is to close in around ten years’ time ending two centuries of military history in the county town. 4

New benefice link

A NEW rural church benefice linking the North Downs has been formed.

Christingle times Staff and pupils at Leeds and Broomfield Primary School celebrate their Ofsted ‘good’ rating

School looks ahead after Ofsted praise

STAFF and pupils at Leeds and Broomfield Primary School are celebrating after being rated “good” by education inspectors Ofsted. The Church of England school

was inspected on October 19 and 20, and the result follows years of unsatisfactory Ofsted inspection grades.

Head of School Julie Wellman told parents: “This means that in- spectors judged the school to have good teaching, learning and assess- ment, good leadership and man- agement, good personal development, behaviour and wel- fare, good outcomes and good early year’s provision. “We would like to thank all staff, parents and pupils for their hard work and support on our journey to becoming a good school. “Leeds and Broomfield C of E Pri- mary School has had a long history of requiring improvement and we are very proud that the school has now made this significant step.”

Head of the governing body Val Puncher said: “It has been a long, hard road, but we have got a good rating which is really well-deserved and is a credit to the staff and chil- dren.

“When I heard the news I just shouted ‘Oh Great!’ Hopefully, we can go on from here and get an out- standing rating.”

Former primary school head teacher Mrs Puncher, who lives in Bearsted, joined the governing body in 2013.

She quickly assumed the role of chairman of governors and worked closely with executive head Emma Hickling and head of school Julie Wellman when the school merged into the federation with Kingswood and Ulcombe.

Mrs Puncher added: “It’s a really exciting time for the school and it is

a testament to the hard work of Emma and Julie as well as the pupils, parents and governors that we are where we are.”

There is currently a public con- sultation for a single federated school governing body to start in April 2017.

The school’s previous two Ofsted reports were unfavourable “require improvement” ratings.

County councillor Gary Cooke said: “I have worked with the school for a number of years and I am absolutely over the moon that Ofsted has finally realised what we have all recognised for some time – that Leeds and Broomfield is a good school to say the very least. “I would like to say a big well done to Julie Wellman and her team at the school, the staff, parents, gov- ernors and, of course, the pupils.”


Lest we forget THOUSANDS of residents, sol-

diers and dignitaries turned out on Remembrance Sunday to pay respects to the fallen. The parade made its way through Maidstone to the war memorial where the last post was sounded.


CHECK times and dates of Christ- ingle services this Christmas.

Morrisons relaunch

MORRISONS is set to unveil its extension and product ranges next month.

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

22 Middle of pay league 22 Relief road ‘action’

A COUNCIL transport boss wants action on a relief road for Leeds/Langley.

27 Obituaries

Comment 30-31 34

Parish Councils 46-47

A RESURFACED stretch of White Horse Lane is creating noise is- sues in Otham; there have been reports of litter on playing fields in Leeds; a new councillor, Rachel Robinson, has been co-opted onto the parish council in Ul- combe; the allotment gate in Bredhurst has been damaged.

Crime Reports 47

A VEHICLE in Mallings Drive, Bearsted, was broken into; a number plate was stolen from a Toyota 4X4 in Lenham; a lawn- mower was stolen from a garage in Detling; tools were taken from a van parked outside a property in Downswood.

10 6

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