6 March 2021
Bus services: Full service from 8 March. Bus passes not valid before 9.30 am.
Stagecoach have issued the following statement:Our bus services in Kent and East Sussex will step up to 100% from Monday 8 March. Full pre-COVID school day timetables will be restored on most routes. We're pleased to finally be able to return to normal service and we welcome the support from Kent County Council and East Sussex County Council that has enabled this to happen.
If you travel to and from school, please check out our schools information web page for the latest news.
Despite this increase in service levels, it's vital that if you need to make a bus journey, you follow the government rules. Face coverings must be worn (unless you are medically exempt) and windows on most bus types should be left in the open position to allow the flow of fresh air. Capacity is limited to help with social distancing and you should be mindful to keep a safe distance from others (unless travelling with someone from your household bubble).
Also from 8 March, Kent County Council and East Sussex County Council have confirmed that concessionary travel passes will no longer be accepted for travel before 09:30am.
23 February 2021
Planning permission sought for extensions at 172 Sandyhurst Lane
A planning application has been made for two storey side/front/rear extensions and alterations to elevations at 172 Sandyhurst Lane. The closing date for comments is 18 March 2021. Full details are available here (search for application number 21/00261/AS).
23 February 2021
Discharge of Condition 6 (parking arrangements) for planning permission for Downsway, 35 Sandyhurst Lane
Details have been submitted for the discharge of condition 6 (provision, surfacing and drainage of parking and turning area) of the planning permission granted for a single storey outbuilding at Downsway, 35 Sandyhurst Lane. Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 18/01466/CONA/AS).
19 February 2021
SLRA AGM 2021: Details announced
The SLRA will hold its Annual General Meeting at 7.00 pm on Wednesday 17 March 2021. The meeting will be held online using Zoom.
The meeting will be our first AGM for two years as we had to cancel the 2020 event at short notice, due to the Covid pandemic. It is open to existing members and potential new members and, in addition to the brief formal meeting, will include opportunities for contributions "from the floor" and a guest speaker on an interesting topic. Please see our flyer here for the main details; further information on participation will follow nearer the date.
If you wish to make a contribution in the “From the Floor” session, please notify the question/contribution in advance to email@example.com. You will then be invited to speak by the Chair at the appropriate time. (Unfortunately, technology issues mean that we cannot hold our usual “Open Forum” this year).
The AGM will include the election of the committee. We are always looking for new committee members, so please let us know (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you would be interested in standing or if you have a nomination.
The AGM is a great opportunity to participate in the local community and is normally attended by local councillors. Please note the date in your diary!
16 February 2021
Planning permission granted for extension at Mole Hill, 250 Sandyhurst Lane
Planning permission was granted on 15 February 2021 for an extension to existing garage/carport to create a workshop at Molehill, 250 Sandyhurst Lane. Full details are available here (search for application number 20/01811/AS).
12 February 2021
Retrospective planning permission refused for Elvey Cottage, Kingsland Lane
Retrospective planning was today refused for amendment to the design and the size of the garage/home office approved under planning permission 17/00319/AS to include a residential annexe at Elvey Cottage, Kingsland Lane. The Decision Notice
includes a note as follows:"The applicant is advised that enforcement action has been recommended given the retrospective nature of the planning application. The Council’s position is that the building should be returned to the original design approved application ref. 17/00319/AS."
Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 20/01680/AS).
12 February 2021
Ashford Borough Council has posted the following message. In essence, it says that if waste collections are not made today, the bins are to be taken in and will not be collected, in our area, until Thursday 25 February. At that time, residents will be allowed to leave a further two bags of waste beside the bin.
Recycling will take place as normal next week.
Our crews have worked extremely hard this week to continue to collect bins despite the adverse weather conditions. Here’s what you need to know about collections in the upcoming weeks:
- If your bin has not been collected by the end of today, please remove it from your boundary as it will now be collected on the next refuse week which takes place the w/c 22nd February. We know this means lots of you will have excess waste so residents whose bins we have been unable to access this week will be permitted to leave two bags of side waste next to their bin on the next refuse collection week.
- Recycling collections will take place as normal next week.
- We are aware of the areas that have been missed so please don’t make a missed bin report to us at this time.
Finally, we thank you for your patience during what has been a tricky week – the crews really appreciate your words and support.
9 February 2021
Planning permission granted for extensions at Elden, 61 Sandyhurst Lane
Planning permission was granted on 8 February 2021 for a first floor extension to form a house (from a bungalow) and a side extension to replace the existing conservatory at Elden, 61 Sandyhurst Lane. Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 20/01760/AS).
8 February 2021
Possible planning breach under investigation
Further to our news item of 6 February (below), the SLRA has now raised direct with Ashford Borough Council (ABC) our members’ concerns about a possible breach of planning permission at 28 Sandyhurst Lane. The SLRA letter may be viewed here. Several members have also made individual submissions.
ABC has advised us that there is a current investigation into this matter, case reference CO/21/00021, for which the case officer is Miss Sophie Oliver.
We shall advise members as and when further information is received.
6 February 2021
SLRA raises planning concerns
The SLRA has raised concerns about a possible breach of the planning permission granted for extensions at Two Chimneys, 28 Sandyhurst Lane. A letter has been sent to Westwell Parish Council, which was a statutory consultee for the application. The letter may be viewed here.
2 February 2021
Planning permission granted for extensions at 398 Sandyhurst Lane
Planning permission was granted on 1 February 2021 for a single storey rear extension, two storey link extension between house and detached garage, first floor extension over garage and loft conversion at 398 Sandyhurst Lane. Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 20/01723/AS).
2 February 2021
Westwell Parish Council seeks new Clerk
The following announcement has been made by Westwell Parish Council:
Westwell is a semi-rural parish, situated at the foot of the North Downs, with the Pilgrims Way passing close by. The Parish Council is both forward-looking and takes an active role in parish life. The QEII playing field and play area are run by the Hall Committee, the Hall also being in the remit of the Parish Council, working with members of Parish organisations.
A vacancy will be arising on 1st April 2021 following the impending retirement of the present Clerk, Mrs Susan Wood, on 30th June 2021. The successful candidate will be working alongside Mrs Wood during this period.
The Clerk to Westwell Parish Council is also the Proper Officer and Responsible Financial Officer. The position is for 10 hours per week, mainly home-based. Salary is commensurate with experience within the SJC Scale for Local Government Employees.
For a copy of the present Clerk’s Job Description please email: email@example.com
Ideally, the applicant will have a good knowledge and understanding of local government and a good standard of education.
The duties include:
- Arranging & attending all Parish Council meetings and the Annual Parish Meeting;
- Preparation of Agendas and Minutes;
- Dealing with all financial matters including the production of financial statements for the Annual
- Submitting VAT Returns;
- Dealing with Parish Council Insurance Policies;
- Ensuring Planning Applications are dealt with and comments submitted to Ashford Borough Council
- Maintaining the Parish Council website/social media;
Applicants will need to have good IT skills and have access to broadband.
The successful candidate will be expected to either possess the Certificate in Local Council Administration (CiLCA) or be willing to work towards gaining this.
Interested applicants should send a brief CV and set out reasons for applying in a covering letter to the Clerk to Westwell Parish Council, Mrs S Wood, by email (preferred)
or by post to:
14 Sandyhurst Lane
The closing date for applications is Monday 1st March 2021, with interviews by Zoom on Saturday 6th March 2021
31 January 2021
Hothfield Post Office closed for 5 days
Hothfield Post Office will be closed until Friday, re-opening on Saturday 6 February. The owner, Jayesh Patel, has issued the following statement:
We are going to have to close the Post office till Friday. This is to comply with the advice from the NHS tracking. I was exposed to someone who tested positive for Covid-19. We will reopen on Saturday all being well.
26 January 2021
A20 to be closed overnight for up to 3 nights
The A20 will be closed overnight for up to 3 nights for resurfacing between the Orchard Heights roundabout and the junction with Watery Lane, starting tonight. This means that there will be no access to/from Sandyhurst Lane at the A20 end between 10 pm and 6.00 am. The official closure notice may be viewed here.
16 January 2021
Planning permission sought for extension at Acacia Lodge, 402 Sandyhurst Lane
A planning application has been made for a single storey rear extension at Acacia Lodge, 402 Sandyhurst Lane. The closing date for comments is 8 February 2021. Full details are available here (search for application number 21/00078/AS).
15 January 2021
Planning permission granted for extensions at 136 Sandyhurst Lane
Planning permission was granted on 14 January 2021 for a hip to gable extension with one rear dormer and two front dormer windows, and a rear extension at 136 Sandyhurst Lane. Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 20/01639/AS).
12 January 2021
Planning permission granted for extension at Rudgwick, Westwell Lane
Planning permission was granted on 11 January 2021 for a rear single storey extension at Rudgwick, Westwell Lane. Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 20/01625/AS).
7 January 2021
Planning permission sought for extension at Mole Hill, 250 Sandyhurst Lane
A planning application has been made for an extension to existing garage/carport to create a workshop at Molehill, 250 Sandyhurst Lane. The closing date for comments is 30 January 2021. Full details are available here (search for application number 20/01811/AS).
5 January 2021
Message from Charing Surgery
Please see the following message from Charing Surgery to Parish Councils with residents who attend Charing, Hamstreet, Woodchurch or Tenterden (Ivy Court) Surgeries:
Charing Surgery is currently acting as the vaccination centre for the Primary Care Network consisting of these four surgeries. Nearly 1,000 patients over 80 had their first dose of the Pfizer vaccine on December 18th or 19th. They were given appointments for the second dose on January 8th and 9th. In view of the debate over whether the priority should now be to give more people the first dose of a vaccine, the surgeries wish to reassure those patients that they should still attend for their second dose as planned. While they are sending text messages where they have mobile phone numbers for people concerned they do not have numbers for everyone.
An additional 280 people will get their first vaccine on January 10th (since now six doses can be extracted per vial rather than five) – these and subsequent patients will wait up to 12 weeks for their second dose.
Also there are around 2,660 people over 80 who attend one of the four surgeries – more than double those so far vaccinated. So people over 80 who have not yet been called should not be concerned as they will be called as soon as more supplies become available.
The surgery expects to get the first batch of the Oxford vaccine towards the end of this week and this will be used for Care Homes across the primary care network. They do not yet know when they will get further batches but hope it will not be long before they are getting regular supplies.
22 December 2020
SLRA submits planning objection comments
Recently a retrospective planning application has been made for amendment to the design and the size of the garage/home office previously approved in 2017 for Elvey Cottage, Kingsland Lane (see news item, 5 December 2020).
Detailed study of the retrospective application shows that he building which has been erected is substantially different in size and design from that previously approved and now includes a residential annexe. It is located within the Kent Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. It appears to contravene policies which include HOU9 (standalone annexes) in the Ashford Local Plan.
In keeping with the SLRA’s primary constitutional objective (Protecting the rural character of Sandyhurst Lane and the adjoining area), it is appropriate for us to submit objection comments for this application.
The SLRA submission may be viewed here and, for ease of reference, Policy HOU9 from the adopted Ashford Local Plan may be viewed here.
21 December 2020
Planning permission sought for extensions at Elden, 61 Sandyhurst Lane
A planning application has been made for a first floor extension to form a house (from a bungalow) and a side extension to replace the existing conservatory at Elden, 61 Sandyhurst Lane. The closing date for comments is 28 January 2021. Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 20/01760/AS).
18 December 2020
Planning permission sought for extensions at 398 Sandyhurst Lane
A planning application has been made for a single storey rear extension, two storey link extension between house and detached garage, first floor extension over garage and loft conversion at 398 Sandyhurst Lane. The closing date for comments is 9 January 2021. Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 20/01723/AS).
8 December 2020
Planning permission sought for extension at Rudgwick, Westwell Lane
A planning application has been made for a rear single storey extension at Rudgwick, Westwell Lane. The closing date for comments is 31 December 2020. Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 20/01625/AS).
5 December 2020
Retrospective planning application for Elvy Cottage, Kingsland Lane
A retrospective planning application has been made for amendment to the design and the size of the garage/home office approved under planning permission 17/00319/AS to include a residential annexe at Elvy Cottage, Kingsland Lane. Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 20/01680/AS).
Planning permission refused for variation to condition at Downsway,
35 Sandyhurst Lane
Planning permission was refused on 3 December for the application for Downsway, 35 Sandyhurst Lane for a variation to condition 4 on planning permission 18/01466/AS (Single storey outbuilding for a mixed use for domestic use and use as an office for the householder's profession of accountancy) to allow 4 members of staff, not being part of the main household, to be employed in the approved building.
The reasons for refusal are given as follows:
The proposal is contrary to policies SP3, EMP1, TRA3b and TRA7 of the Ashford Local Plan 2030 and Central Government guidance contained in the National Planning Policy Framework and would therefore be contrary to interests of acknowledged planning importance for the following reasons:
1. The proposal would result in an intensification of a business use in a residential area which would constitute a material change of use of the approved building and therefore does not constitute a minor material amendment to planning permission 18/01466/AS.
2. In the absence of a parking and turning plan the applicant has failed to demonstrate that adequate on-site parking could be provided for the increased business use. As a result the proposal would potentially result in parking congestion within Sandyhurst Lane and highways safety issues.
3. The intensification of the use would result in increased vehicle movements at the residential property which would have a detrimental impact on the residential amenities in the immediate locality through noise and distance which would be uncharacteristic of this residential location.
Full details may be found here (search for application number 20/01409/AS).
2 December 2020
Kent resilience plans for post-Brexit
With the forthcoming end of the Brexit transition period on 1st January 2021, there is much media speculation on the likely impact on Kent, particularly in relation to roads, transport and possible consequences for communities and households.
Members who wish to learn more about the preparations in progress may wish to review the website “Kent Prepared” which is run by the multi-agency Kent Resilience Forum. The website contains information and advice to support local communities prepare for, respond to and recover from a wide range of emergencies, as well as the end of the post-Brexit transition, but on the latter subject there is a downloadable section entitled “Preparing Kent for the end of the Brexit Transition Period”, which may be viewed here.
This document contains detailed information about the measures planned to minimise traffic disruption. In addition, your attention is drawn to the advice for communities, household contingency plans and journey planning towards the end of the document, on pages 12 and 13.
1 December 2020
Planning permission sought for extensions at 136 Sandyhurst Lane
A planning application has been made for a hip to gable extension with one rear dormer and two front dormer windows, and a rear extension at 136 Sandyhurst Lane. The closing date for comments is 24 December 2020. Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 20/01639/AS).
28 November 2020
Planning permission granted for extension at Wide View, Lenacre Street
Planning permission was granted on 27 November 2020 for the erection of a two storey side and rear extension at Wide View, Lenacre Street. Full details may be viewed here (search for case number 20/01362/AS).
28 November 2020
Christmas and New Year bin collections
SLRA members who normally have their refuse, recycling, food and garden recycling bins collected on a Thursday will have the following arrangements over the Christmas and New Year period:
Recycling (green): Collection due on Thursday 24th December will take place on that day – no change
Refuse (grey): Collection due on Thursday 31st December will take place on Saturday 2nd January
Recycling (green): Collection due on Thursday 7th January will take place on Friday 8th January
Normal Recycling, Refuse and Food collections will resume on Thursday 14th January.
Garden Recycling (brown): No collection on Thursday 31st December. The next collection after this will be on Thursday 14th January.
The full schedule is shown here.
24 November 2020
Planning application for the former Sand Pit, Sandyhurst Lane withdrawn
The most recent application for outline planning permission for 9 dwellings at the former Sand Pit to the south of 200 and the east of 198 Sandyhurst Lane has been “withdrawn by the applicant and no further action will be taken”.
Members will recall that the SLRA and many others campaigned hard against this proposal, which replaced a previous application for 18 dwellings, which was withdrawn in 2018 after similar campaigning. The threat of development on this site has been present since it was first proposed in 2011 as a “submitted site” for the Ashford Urban Sites and Infrastructure Development Plan and subsequently the Ashford Local Plan, but it was not included in the Plan.
Full details of the current withdrawal may be viewed here (search for application number 18/01554/AS). The previous application (number 17/01636/AS) may be found by clicking on the “Site history” tab.
24 November 2020
Planning permission granted for extensions at Two Chimneys,
28 Sandyhurst Lane
Planning permission was granted on 23 November 2020 for ground and first floor extensions, extension to roof and changes to facing materials at Two Chimneys, 28 Sandyhurst Lane. A condition imposed is that the extension permitted shall not be occupied at any time other than for purposes ancillary to the residential use of the dwelling known as 28 Sandyhurst Lane. Reason: To prevent the formation of a separated dwelling. Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 20/01434/AS).
5 November 2020
Westwell online silent auction
We have been asked to pass on the following message about the online Silent Auction being held in support of St Mary Westwell Church Funds:
At this time of year, Westwell traditionally has the annual Harvest Auction of Promises followed by the Christmas Bazaar.
Inevitably neither of these are happening in the usual format, however, there will be an online Silent Auction combining the two.
The auction will run from this Saturday, November 7th to 14th.
Do grab a bargain by bidding for anything that takes your fancy!
All profits to St Mary Westwell Church Funds
Contact me for more information.
Martin Wyatt Churchwarden
0795 786 4585
2 November 2020
SLRA submits response to Boughton Aluph & Eastwell Neighbourhood Plan consultation
The SLRA has submitted a response to Ashford Borough Council's public consultation on the Boughton Aluph & Eastwell Parishes Neighbourhood Plan. The response congratulates the BA&E Parish Council and its neighbourhood planning team on the production of a comprehensive Neighbourhood Plan which, in the
most part, meets our earlier criticisms and now complements and supports our Mission Statement and vision for the future of the area. The SLRA endorses the Neighbourhood Plan whilst indicating those detailed points we still think need addressing. The SLRA response may be viewed here and the Neighbourhood Plan here.
29 October 2020
Planning permission sought for extensions at Two Chimneys, 28 Sandyhurst Lane
A planning application has been made for ground and first floor extensions, extension to roof and changes to facing materials at Two Chimneys, 28 Sandyhurst Lane. The closing date for comments is 21 November 2020. Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 20/01434/AS).
23 October 2020
Planning permission sought for variation to condition at Downsway,
35 Sandyhurst Lane
A planning application has been made for Downsway, 35 Sandyhurst Lane. It is for a variation to condition 4 on planning permission 18/01466/AS (Single storey outbuilding for a mixed use for domestic use and use as an office for the householder's profession of accountancy) to allow 4 members of staff, not being part of the main household, to be employed in the approved building.
The closing date for comments is 15 November 2020. Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 20/01409/AS).
21 October 2020
The SLRA defibrillator, installed outside the Hare & Hounds, has today been fitted with a new battery. This is an expensive item and we are grateful to SLRA members for their continued support, which enables us to purchase such essential items. As a reminder of the details of the defibrillator, including means of access and online training available, please see below for an extract of the news item when the defibrillator was installed:
The SLRA has now installed a Public Access Defibrillator (PAD), also known as an Automated External Defibrillator (AED). It is located in a purpose-designed illuminated cabinet on the back of the low outer front wall of the Hare and Hounds public house at Potters Corner. It is available at all times, 24/7. To try to guard against theft and vandalism, the cabinet is locked, but can be opened with a four-digit code available to callers to 999 and from the pub.
We are grateful to the landlord of the Hare and Hounds for supporting this initiative and for providing the location and a power supply for the cabinet in which the PAD is housed. We are also grateful to SLRA committee member Andy Peddle, Managing Director of ANP Security, for providing cabinet installation services.
Defibrillators, used in conjunction with CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation), can double the survival chances of a person suffering an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest. Every year there are about 30,000 such cardiac arrests in the UK. Using a defibrillator is very easy and straightforward. Please take a moment to watch the short training video by the British Heart Foundation, here, or St Johns Ambulance, here.
16 October 2020
Ashford 10 & 5 mile run
The Ashford and District 10 & 5 mile run, which involves road closures in Sandyhurst Lane and Lenacre Street, was scheduled for Sunday 25 October 2020, but will not now take place.
The next such event is scheduled for Sunday 31 October 2021.
14 October 2020
Planning permission sought for extension at Wide View, Lenacre Street
A planning application has been made for the erection of a two storey side and rear extension at Wide View, Lenacre Street. The closing date for comments is 6 November 2020. Full details may be viewed here (search for case number 20/01362/AS).
9 October 2020
Damian Green MP meets Highways England
As members will be aware, Damian Green MP had a meeting with Highways England on 30 September at which one of the agenda items was the M20 traffic noise and our long-running campaign for resurfacing between junctions 8 and 9. He was supported by a petition of over 1,000 signatures and letters from interested parties.
Perhaps not surprisingly, given the budgetary pressures of the pandemic and Brexit, the results of the meeting were less than we ideally would have hoped for. Damian has written to us with a report on the meeting. He was able to establish that there is a national policy to phase out noisy concrete surfaces over the next 15 years. Over the next 5 years they will be spending £390 million and this will be repeated in subsequent periods.
For the M20, whilst resurfacing is still some way away, over the coming year there will be work to replace damaged joints and repair cracked slabs which, it is claimed, will have a beneficial effect on the noise level. Between 2021 and 2023 they will be working on replacement of whole slabs, which “will further reduce the noise”. The rest of the work will be done after 2025.
The full text of Damian’s letter can be viewed here.
The SLRA will continue to use every opportunity to press for resurfacing of the M20 at the earliest opportunity.
29 September 2020
Petition for resurfacing the M20 gains over 1,000 signatures
The petition for resurfacing the M20 between junctions 8 and 9, launched by Westwell resident Penny Knatchbull, supported by the SLRA, has reached over 1,000 signatures and carries over 70 comments from residents. The petition has been sent to Damian Green MP ahead of his meeting with Highways England tomorrow, 30 September. Thank you to all those who have supported this petition.
28 September 2020
Boughton Aluph & Eastwell Neighbourhood Plan
The Boughton Aluph & Eastwell Neighbourhood Plan has today started a six week period of public consultation. The so-called Regulation 16 version of the Plan has been published as a consultation document by Ashford Borough Council. Members of the public are encouraged to respond to the online consultation questionnaire. It is also possible to respond by post or email. The official notice reads:
Boughton Aluph and Eastwell Parish Council has submitted the Boughton Aluph and Eastwell Parish Neighbourhood Plan to Ashford Borough Council (ABC). As the local planning authority, ABC is now required to consult for six weeks on the submission document.
The Boughton Aluph and Eastwell Parish Neighbourhood Plan has been developed in consultation with the local community and provides a vision for the future of the Parish. It sets out a vision, land designations and topic policies, which will be used to help determine planning applications within the Parish.
Because of the Covid-19 pandemic, the consultation is mainly online and hard copies will not be available at the usual viewing points. However, the Parish Council have a number of hard copies of the consultation document and comment forms available to collect from locations in the parish. If you need a physical copy of the document, please contact the Parish Clerk on 07419 740559 who will assist you to make these arrangements.
The consultation may be accessed at https://haveyoursay.ashford.gov.uk/consult.ti/BAE_NDP/consultationHome where copies of the Neighbourhood Plan and associated documents may be viewed. A copy of the Neighbourhood Plan is also available on the SLRA website here.
The consultation is open from today until 5 pm on Friday 6 November 2020.
27 September 2020
Collection of small electrical items suspended
Small electrical items and household batteries can normally be recycled by leaving them in a clear tied bag on top of the grey refuse bin.
Please note the following announcement from Ashford Borough Council:
Please be advised that due to the fire at the Biffa depot on Tuesday 15th September we are unable to take any extra small waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) or batteries on collections days for the foreseeable future.
Please dispose of them at other locations but do not place in the refuse bin itself as this causes contamination and a potential fire hazard to the load.
The options for disposal are either to take to the KCC Household Waste Recycling Centre (which requires booking a slot) or, for household batteries, to a supermarket (eg Sainsburys, Tesco, Lidl etc) or other retail outlet which offers a battery recycling service.
25 September 2020
Update on Sand Pit planning application
Members will recall that amended plans were submitted in May for the outline planning application for 9 dwellings at the Sand Pit to the South of 200 and east of 198 Sandyhurst Lane. The SLRA and many members submitted objection comments during June.
Kent County Council’s Ecological Advice Service also submitted comments and concluded that additional information was required. The developers subsequently submitted a revised Ecological Appraisal for the site and KCC Ecological Advice Service has now submitted their further comments, referring to the additional information provided.
The conclusion of the latest comments from KCC Ecological Advice Service reads as follows:
We have reviewed the additional ecological information submitted with this planning application and we advise that it has not fully addressed our previous comments provided in June 2020.
The relevant documents may be viewed on the planning website here (search for application number 18/01554/AS).
24 September 2020
Eureka Park development/M20 noise
Further to our exchange of correspondence in July with the agents (DHA Planning) of the developers (Quadrant Eureka) of the Eureka Park site, we are aware that the three affected Parish Councils (Westwell, Boughton Aluph & Eastwell and Kennington Community Council) have received informal presentations from DHA, who requested they wait until the launch of DHA's online consultation later this month before commenting on the provisional plans they disclosed.
However, the SLRA has further engaged directly with DHA/Quadrant to gain their support in the campaign to get the M20 resurfaced. As a result, we understand that Quadrant have now written directly to Damian Green MP expressing their concerns about the noise levels from the concrete surface and to convey that concern to Highways England at his forthcoming meeting with them. This is scheduled for 30 September.
In conjunction with the Westwell resident who set up the petition, we shall also ensure that Damian Green is armed with the results of the petition ahead of his meeting. So far, this has attracted over 900 signatures.
Last opportunity to sign – go to http://chng.it/9Gh645PYXD
4 September 2020
Petition - Campaign for resurfacing the M20 between junctions 8 and 9
Westwell resident Penny Knatchbull, supported by the SLRA, has launched a petition as part of the ongoing campaign to get the M20 resurfaced between junctions 8 and 9, to reduce the high level of traffic noise.
We encourage all members of the SLRA, and all members of their families, neighbours and friends to sign the petition. As you may be aware (from our email of 7 August), we have recently been in touch with our MP, Damian Green, on this issue and he is meeting with Highways England in September. A strongly supported petition will obviously be helpful in pressing Highways England for action.
The petition can be accessed and signed at: http://chng.it/9Gh645PYXD. The wording of it is reproduced below:
Those of us living along the M20 Corridor between J 8 and 9 are tired of hearing that the old, concrete surface is adequate and will only be replaced when funds are available. Noise levels are not taken into account and have now become unacceptable for those living near the motorway. Everyone deserves some peace in their lives. The concrete surface is outdated and not fit for purpose. There are many more vehicles, especially large trucks, that use the motorway now than when it was first built. We need action not vague promises.
How much money must have been wasted during the countdown to Brexit? Operation Stack, with its endless cones? Operation Brock with the permanent barriers? All now taken down and removed to be replaced with yet more barriers over the past few days. What's next?
Defra, as part of its Noise Action Plan has identified that areas between J 8 and 9 require investigation. We have an identified problem!
Damian Green, our local MP has met with Highways England who released a statement that 'work is expected to take place in 2021/22, subject to availability of funds'. Not really a commitment by Highways England. He will be meeting them again later in September in the hope of getting a more definite time frame. He needs our support so please sign this petition.
Please sign today!
25 August 2020
Tip to close for 3 weeks
The Cobbs Wood Household Waste and Recycling Centre will temporarily close on 31 August and reopen on 21 September. KCC has to replace the concrete floor in the transfer station. (Source: Councillor Winston Michael).
There currently are only two days (30th and 31st August) available on the booking page for the Ashford tip. Slots may be booked here.
22 August 2020
Kingsland Lane planned closure
Kingsland Lane is to be closed to through traffic on 9 September, between 09:30 and approximately 15:30, to allow BT to carry out telegraph pole testing works.
The alternative route for through traffic given by KCC is through Westwell village via Eastwell Lane, The Street and Westwell Lane.
The official notice detailing the closure may be viewed here.
14 August 2020
Green buffer zones
The Government recently purchased the site known as “MOJO” near junction 10A of the M20, to be developed as a customs clearance and lorry holding area following the full implementation of Brexit in January 2021. Local residents have now set up a petition asking Ashford Borough Council to designate a “green buffer zone” between the MOJO site and Mersham village on land which is “the last green field” between Mersham and the site. The petition may be accessed at http://chng.it/qNLbxYRb.
Defending the principle of a “green buffer zone” supports the arguments put forward successfully by the SLRA for a “generous landscaped buffer” between the proposed development at Eureka Park and residential properties in Sandyhurst Lane.
11 August 2020
Sandyacres Sports and Social Centre has now reopened and is taking bookings. It is adhering to government guidelines with social distancing and regular cleaning to the bar areas & toilets. Foot operated sanitisers are available. At each entrance there is a one way system in place, with markings on the floor. Bookings can be made through the Sandyacres website.
7 August 2020
Damian Green MP to raise M20 noise again with Highways England
Following the letter sent by the SLRA to Damian Green MP on 24 July (see news item of that date below), he has undertaken to raise with Highways England once again the issue of resurfacing the M20 between junctions 8 and 9. We have received the following reply from his office:
Dear Mr Bartlett,
Many thanks for your letter of 24th July to Damian Green about the M20 and resurfacing between Junctions 8 and 9.
Damian plans to return to the charge on this in the early autumn, as he has a meeting with Highways England to discuss this and various other issues at the end of September.
He will therefore come back to you once he has managed to once again put this question of resurfacing to Highways England, in the hope of getting a more definite timeframe than we have had in the past.
Senior Parliamentary Assistant/Office Manager to Rt Hon Damian Green MP
Member of Parliament for Ashford
We shall keep members informed of any further developments in the Autumn.
Protecting the rural character of Sandyhurst Lane and the adjoining area
NEWS FOR EARLIER PERIODS
Please go to our News archive index
News Follow us on Twitter