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October 2017 July 2018

Maidstone & Malling’s No. 1 newspaper

FREE No. 246

Panto ahoy!

THE cast of Cinderella, which is to be staged at the Hazlitt Theatre in Maid- stone, took to the River Medway to launch this year's panto. On board The Kentish Lady were national treasure Rustie Lee (Fairy Godmother), former EastEnder Ste- fan Booth (Prince Charming), Eliza- beth Bright (Cinderella), Craig Anderson (Buttons) and, pictured, Stephen Richards and Adam Bor- zone (Ugly Sisters) . They were greeted by pupils from

South Borough Primary School and members of the media. The panto runs from December 1-31. For tick- ets go to

‘Weeks of work’ to fix sinkhole in road

CCTV call in a bid to stop fly-tipping

THE closure of one ofMaidstone’smain routes will continue for at least another fiveweeks, aswork goes on to repair amassive sinkhole.

CALLS for the installation of CCTV cameras to prevent fly-tipping on a country road have been made by the local borough councillor.

Tonbridge Road, at its junction with Fountain Lane and Farleigh Road, on Bank Holiday Monday after a dip appeared in the road. That dip gradually claimedmore

of the road, extending to a sinkhole some 20 metres across and three metres deep. Jackson Bradshaw(19), fromFar-

Burberry Lane, near Leeds and Broomfield, has been targeted by waste dumpers for years, but in re- cent months, the problem has be- come more acute. Constructionwaste, rubble, hard

leigh Road, works in the Totally Wicked vape store, which is just metres from the crater. He said: “I found out via Facebook and went to look. “At first, therewas just a dip and

core, windows and household fur- niture is left illegally – often strewn in the middle of the road. Cllr Gill Fort said: “Every month

people were driving over it, but gradually it grew, with the sides

we are having toilets, sinks and construction waste dumped in the village, specifically in Burberry Lane, where we are now thinking of installing cameras on private land, to oversee the problem area.” A recent event in Burberry Lane

saw a caravan burned out while a torched car remains on a footpath

Emergency services closed the

nearby, more than a year after it was dumped and set on fire. The church car park has also seen

many instances of illegal dumping. But it is a problem in many rural

areas including Langley, Otham and Kingswood. Water Lane in Bearsted and Pilgrims Way have also been targeted recently. Last year, Maidstone Borough Council cleared 911 cases of fly-tip- ping and this year more than 163 have been recorded since April. The approaching darker evenings will prompt a rise in illegal tipping. Cllr Fort welcomed a joint initia-

tive by the Environment Agency and the Driver and Vehicle Stan- dards Agency to clamp down on

caving in, into thismassive crater.” While the store has remained

open for business, trade is down about a third. A dozen homeowners on the

Tonbridge Road found themselves being evacuated. They are now back home, but have been advised to contact their insurers about the possibility of any damage. LibbieDrew,who shares a house

unlicensed waste carriers, but be- lieves the cost to small firms of dis- posing of construction waste at a transfer station is proving a deter- rent that is costing councils more. Cllr Fort made her remarks as

with friends on the junction, said: “We were told we needed to leave by the borough council. We have been allowed back in to get things but had to stay in a flat on the Sut- ton Road for over aweek beforewe were allowed back.

one of the borough’s closest trans- fer stations at North Farm, Tun- bridge Wells, announced it will be closed for 10weeks. She added: “If you go along the

“It’s been pretty crazy.” A postman in the area described

the road as a “war zone”, with fencing and bollards. Diversions meant no post could be delivered to some of the homes until Tues- day, June 12. The cause of the sinkhole and

line of increasing fines, they have to be enforced. A reduction in the charge or offering it free may have the desired similar effect.” Athree-monthly litter pick on the mile-long stretch of road through Leeds village produces an average 32 black sacks of rubbish.

Cllr Fort, who also serves as a

howfar it extends has leftKCCun- able to predict exactly howlong the road – a vital route to Maidstone Hospital –will remain closed. It says investigations are contin-


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parish councillor, says teaching children about social responsibility and the issue of litter in schools will help take the issue off the streets. She believes with every household receiving a weekly refuse collection service, there is no excuse for litter being thrown from vehicles or dumped in the road.

uing,with the possibility of the cor- don being extended. A statement added: “At this stage it is not possi- ble to determine the cause of the void or how long it will take to re- pair. “Although a 21-day closure has


FREE No. 255

Kate, 107, diesNews

KATE Hart, a resident at an old people’s home in Bearsted, has died aged 107, her son David has disclosed.

HELEN Whately asked the government to halt the borough’s housing scheme.

MP’s Local Plan bid 3 Cornwallis book bid

Formermayor’sMBE FORMERmayor RichardAsh, of Bearsted, has beenmade anMBE in theQueen’s Birthday Honour’s List.


Plans for Dr Nigel 8 Mela’s public support

PUPILS at Cornwallis Academy got their noses into books in a bid to raise funds for a library.


THE widow of GP Dr Nigel Minnet will walk the Grand Canyon for charity. 12

Jason Donovan date Team sports crisis18

THE former Neighbours star brings his show to the Hazlitt Theatre next May.

READ our report on the decline of some team sports in Maidstone.

Ragwort warning

HORSE owners have been told to beware blooming ragwort this summer.

Obituaries Obituaries

30 36

Parish Councils 37 Parish Councils 34-35


ASH dieback has been discovered in Monks Meadow in Detling; Hollingbourne village fete stall- holder co-ordinator Jean Duffy has resigned; yellow lines are needed for Buffkyn Way, Otham, to allow buses through Imperial Park; rub- bish bins in the sports field in Kingswoodare to be moved over to the picnic area and rear exit.


been advertised, this can be ex- tended if necessary and is not an indication of timescales for repair which, at the moment, are un- known.” Dynamic Probing has been called

in Lenham,

THE borough council will be asked to monitor the Tovil Hill car park to pre- vent overstayers; a resident voiced concerns about the height of conifers and silver birch trees near the pavilion in Barming; salt bins in Tovil would be replenished over the summer; faulty CCTV in Tovilwould be looked at but at a cost of nearly £100; an allotment plot in Barming has been re-let in error.

Crime Reports 35 Crime Reports 37 VEHICLES have been driven over


damge to crops; an attempted into at Hartnup Street; a window vehicle was vandalised in Bearsted

THE window of a car in Fant Lane was damaged; a shed was broken

break-in was reported in Detling; a was broken at a home in Park Av- Rd, Wenuevea; a garage door lock stolen

aged in Snowdon Avenue from an Lenham.

in to test the area for soft spots as part of the county council’s inves- tigations. web design google promotion ecommerce

visit or call 08000 199622 01622 880840

Home Alarms supplied and fitted

ering; pumpkins wereas dam- allotment; a in

Comment 46-47 bogus

plumber connned his way into a Fant Lane house and stole cash. Comment 46-47


THEMela multi-cultural festival is to go ahead thanks to public support.


Maidstone & Malling’s No. 1 newspaper

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