orderForm.noItems Maidstone East Edition Maidstone East Edition

Maidstone & Malling’s No. 1 newspaper

May 2017

Pitching in to keep pavilion

in good shape THE new cricket season is under- way and few places are as pretty or as tranquil towatch the English summer game as Bearsted Green. Summer is never far around

the corner when one glimpses players in whites or hears the sound of bat on ball. Here, our photographer cap-

tured the opening Saturday of the new season on April 22. But while there are no issues

on the pitch, there are problems with the pavilion roof. Find out how to help, turn to

page 3.

Police enforce lorry ban for just one day

POLICE enforcement of a lorry ban from theA20 to theA274 through Leeds villagewas carried out on just a single day in 2016, Downs Mail has learnt.

Seven noticeswere issued onMay

25, 2016, with six drivers each pay- ing a £50 fine while another was summonsed for ignoring theweight restriction. One ticket has been issued in 2017. The disclosures by Kent Police

come as little surprise to Leeds parish councillor Lesley Martin, who counts an average of three lor- ries an hour flouting the ban when she takes part in the LorryWatch surveys. In March, hopes were raised that

Kent Police had decided to clamp down on truckers ignoring the ban

when a lorrywas pulled in at the en- trance to Leeds Castle. But it was a one-off. County councillor Gary Cooke re-

cently pressed the chief constable of Kent to do more to enforce the 17tonne weight restriction on the B2163. He said: “Seven tickets is hardly

any, given the frequency with which they thunder through Leeds. I do think of equal importance is the in- adequacy of the fines that police are allowed to issue. “These are treated by lorry opera- tors as a cost of doing business and

little byway of deterrent. But it fur- ther highlights the need for a Leeds- Langley relief road.” Aspokesman for Kent Police said: “Officers will continue to enforce this weight restriction as and when their duties allow, and Kent Police encourages residents of Leeds vil- lage to report details of any vehicle seen committing an offence as and when they see this take place. “Kent Police is aware of residents’ concerns and officers will continue to patrol the area in line with their other duties for the rest of the Maid- stone district.” Borough councillor Gill Fort said:

“If the police don’t stop them and hand out a meaningful fine, then they’ll just carry on coming through as they have been.” OnMay25 last year, police also is-

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

sued three more notices for drivers exceeding their hours for which one payment of £200 and two payments of £300were made.

FREE No. 241

News Woodcut Farm worry

THE borough council’s officers have indicated they are unwilling to contest a major develop- ment near M20 junction 8. 4

Local Plan control

A TOP borough councillor says the Local Plan gives Maidstone control of its future.

5 Bearsted’s primary

BEARSTED is to get a new primary school by September 2018. 6

Helene beats pain

A BEARSTED mum finished the London Marathon despite a leg injury.

Fir tree mystery

WE get to the bottom of why a fir tree appeared on an A20 roundabout.

10 Lenham closure

THE much-loved butcher’s shop in Lenham has shut after 11 years.

Obituaries Comment


40 42

Parish Councils43-55

A GRAFFITI-covered van parked on the M20 junction 8 round- about at Hollingbourne has been moved; litter-pickers collected 34 bags of rubbish in Leeds; the installation of dog bins in Lenham is almost complete; a dangerous tree in Ulcombe has been reduced to hedge level.

Crime Reports 55

TWO pots were stolen from a garden in Harrietsham; a shed was broken into in Otham; a mountain bike was stolen from outside a shop in Kingswood; iron gates were stolen from a drive in Otham; a shed was broken into in Bearsted but nothing was stolen.


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